Bits from Dennis Lindsey Interview, 12/6
On closing games, consistency and youth
I think we’ll learn those lessons [on closing games]. Hopefully it won’t be 82 games of fourth quarter meltdowns. But, and certainly, you know, having some of our personnel back [from injury] has helped Ty[rone Corbin]…on how we’re going to play.
And then, you have things that you’re working on hard, but you know, you just, you, the young group just can’t consistently put it in the game as a group. And you still have to work on those things in practice, and you still have to, you know, take your small wins here and there.
But you know, right now, you know, you could point towards consistency as an issue. But I think consistency is the result of many underlying issues that we have in youth and inexperience and some other things being most notable.
On building for the future
Look, you know, we had the team that we had the last years, and I think we tapped that team out, especially with what we were, the commitments that we were gonna have to make going forwards if we were to try to keep it intact…
But, look. It’s not, you know, young guys come hell or high water, you know?
We have, you know, Richard Jefferson that we’re trying to recreate his career, and we owe him a lot, you know, towards his career, and responsibility to continue it. And Ty’s coached him well, and been honest with him, you know? And so Richard, I do, I think appreciates that.
We have Brandon Rush, that we’ve gone through a long rehab, and we’ve been very patient and diligent. We could’ve rushed him back, but we didn’t physically or mentally. And I think Brandon and [his agent] Mark Bartelstein appreciate that.
You know, same thing with Andris Biedrins.
On Brandon Rush’s future with the Jazz
I think Brandon’s in a real sweet spot, that, a couple things. It could go a couple different ways. One, we need a, the, it’s a popular term now amongst hard-core basketball fans, the “3&D” role where you make corner threes and you defend the opposing player’s best wing. And I think certainly Brandon has those capabilities.
He had those capabilities pre-injury. He’s come back, our medical team has just done an outstanding job getting his, him back to full strength, and we’ve got, you know, 60, 60-plus games to vet this.
And you know, will aggressive asset accumulation rule today with some of our veterans, and one-year contracts? I don’t know, but I know this: I know Brandon has the characteristics as a shooter and wing size and he’s been, you know, he’s been a great member of our team in some subtle ways.
And I think, you know, going forward, we’ll discover whether, you know, he can be long term or if we need to do something else. But I could certainly see Brandon Rush in a Jazz uniform going forward because we need that role.
On playing time decisions
The coach is the king. He makes decisions on playing time because, again, I can’t re-emphasize this fact enough. If the players, if the agents, even if media and fans know that you can go around the coach, and complain and not go through the coach and earn your minutes, then you have no order…
At the end of the day, it’s Ty’s job to put teams out there and lineups out there that can function very well…Ty has full authority to play the guys that he thinks puts the best team out there.
On the reduction in Enes Kanter’s minutes
Whether Enes starts or not, he’s a big part of what we’re doing. He’ll get big minutes. The lineup with Enes and Derrick [Favors] have been challenged. And look, you know, we need to, it’s not just about Enes or Derrick or any one player. But we gotta have the appropriate spacing to allow Trey [Burke] to be Trey.
You know, and sometimes with our lineup with Derrick and Enes, our spacing’s challenged. Same thing with Gordon [Hayward] and Alec [Burks]. So I do think Enes is a huge part of what we’re doing. I do think, you know, Enes can step out and shoot the ball, but we’ve been challenged, you know, defensively and execution-wise with our two young bigs.
And you know, I think at the end of the day Enes will get the message and he’ll run harder and guard harder, and you know, he and Enes, or he and Derrick, will communicate better.
But there’s, again, there’s a spot, you know, for Marvin Williams. He’s just 27 years old. We’re bringing him to a new role. He’s playing very well. He’s allowed our group to function well, so at the end of the day, it just can’t be about any one player or a subset of players. It has to be about the group.
Do you think this team can play transition basketball?
The last few games, you can see really good point guards, you know, and Trey’s showing some good signs…
I’m a little surprised, because at Michigan, they were not a fast-break team even though they were number one in offensive efficiency, and Trey was the impetus and the trigger man behind that. They were really a half-court, empty-post, multiple pick-and-roll team.
But Ty has done a real good job, he started in the summer. We didn’t get to it in Summer League as much as we did our open gym period, of really getting Trey to break out…So I do think we will, you know, in time run more, run better…
Both of our young bigs, in Enes and Derrick, have to run the floor both ways better. Now, they’re both very capable and athletic and you know, I think now that we are able to deliver the ball a little bit more, I think we can run. But again, you know, when you went big, it’s not just running. It’s just not, it’s not, you know, half-court defense; it’s not half-court offense. It’s all of those things, and rebounding and more. So we want to have very good balance going forward. (1280)