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Bits from Randy Rigby Interview, 1/23

January 23, 2014
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You’ve said the coaches will be judged this year on defensive improvement. How are the Jazz doing on that end of the floor?
Well, we’re still watching very closely on how we’re doing, defensively. Now, and when we say that, you have to also understand that we also recognize that it’s also, with what they have in front of ’em, that they’re having to deal with.

And I’ve been very encouraged by what our coaching staff has been doing in, I think we’re seeing some very good growth and development that they’re trying to incorporate in, in improving our defense, and our offense, and our overall game plan. And they’re working hard. I think they’re the biggest critics of themself, of saying, “What are we doing to continue to improve?”

But they’ve had some, you know, handicapping to a certain degree, sometimes, when, because of injuries, because of injuries to a Trey Burke, that all of a sudden, and Marvin Williams, that we had early on in the season. And even Jeremy Evans.

That, it’s handicapped them to be a certain degree of being able to have to adjust what they’ve been wanting to work on defensively. And make adjustments, you know what, on the fly, based on what our lineups have been.

So as we look at these things, there’s a lot that has to go into it and a lot has to be weighed. I think the thing that also becomes important for us, is the attitude and the mindset and the desires that they’re doing. And the communication that is going on with them as a coaching staff that is also going on with basketball operations, that, of making those improvements in how things are going. So, those are things that we continue to work on.

We’re still halfway through this season. But I’ll tell ya. You couldn’t axe for individuals of a Ty Corbin’s caliber, of character, and desire to work, and being a team player, and doing what we’ve asked him to do from an organization standpoint, of being part of this whole team, you know, what, they don’t get any better than Ty Corbin.

Thoughts on the first half of the season
We see good signs when we have this whole team coming together, and healthy, and playing together. We can do some good things, and we can make some real inroads. When we’re not healthy, when we don’t have our full complement, we see some challenges and some things, that, individuals, that need to recognize that they can improve on.

And our coaching staff is making note of those things, and working very hard, at, then, making those adjustments, and corrections. So I think our players are recognizing that we still can be good. But we still gotta stay together. We gotta work together, and there’s room for improvement, and there’s room for development.

On the Jazz’s lack of consistency
That’s a sign of a young team, of being inconsistent…There’s a lot of issues that [veteran teams] have to struggle with, of health issues, of the travel issues, of all those things, and yet through those, they can still re–be consistent.

But I think our young players, those inconsistencies or those issues, all of a sudden, they create them not being able to necessarily perform on certain given nights like we would hope, and that’s where they’ve gotta improve.

On differentiating inconsistency caused by youth and inconsistency caused by players that are just inconsistent
Well, it’s, that’s sports, and unfortunately, that’s life. And what we have to teach, and that’s why I’ve appreciated what Ty is doing with our team.

I’ve been very happy with, as we’ve gone through some of those challenges, our team has stayed together. And you’ve stayed together and believe in one another through those things, but at the same time we hold personal accountability to each one of us to continue to be better.

Are you concerned about Enes Kanter?
You know what? I’m not concerned about Enes. Well, let me rephrase that. We’re always concerned about our players. But I’m [not] overreacting because I think Enes has gone through some different periods this year, particularly.

Again, I want to reiterate that we continue to see what’s, Enes is a young player in basketball years and basketball mileage because he picked up the game so much later and he’s got a lot of catching up to do. He didn’t get as much, really, of that collegiate experiences and playing time. We’re trying, he’s trying now to make up for some kind of lost ground.

And with that, comes, then, the challenge of being a young man, from a different culture, from a different country, adjusting to, also, then, the NBA style. And so, he’s had some challenges.

And you know what? I’ve been impressed with how Enes has handled some of those things, and he’s, but he still struggles and there’s still challenges that he continues to deal with. And, but I think up until the last two games, there have been some good signs that he’s actually been kinda working through a little bit of a challenging period that he had. He started, then, showing some much better signs.

Then we put him into a role, like last game, of starting. And so, they kind of start learning some things, but then you put ’em into a new role, and all of a sudden, they’re kind of out of their comfort zone. And you’re s–pushing him to stretch and to grow. And then you show signs, and they show where they, then, have weaknesses. And they become apparent.

And the one positive thing is these games are now making us see that, and hopefully then they recognize, “Okay, here’s an area I’ve gotta work on.” We recognize it and say, “We want to help you work on this stuff.” And so, we’re mindful of it, they’re mindful of it, and there’s work that then is done on it.

I had a good conversation yesterday with Karl Malone, who’s also continues to spend time on the phone with Enes, and talking about him, about the mental preparation about staying mentally positive, of being able to deal with these issues as well.

Randy Rigby on the trade deadline, Unintentional Dirty Quote Machine
That’s what I think I enjoy as well, is seeing these men come together and actually challenge one another’s thinking, so that they’re always sharpening the sword, and always trying to make sure that we are on top of this as much as possible so that we can, as things become fluid, as things can change, we add-we’ve identified potential variable plans that are going on. It’s such a fluid game. It’s such a fluid business. (1280)

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Jeremy permalink
    January 23, 2014 11:28 pm

    Why can’t he just say, “Our defense is terrible. We are failing in that aspect.” ?

    • January 24, 2014 6:11 pm

      Because it’s all sunshine and rainbows in Jazzland.

  2. Steve permalink
    January 26, 2014 7:30 am

    Hold up. The Jazz are dead last in defensive efficiency by a mile. How is any of that “encouraging”? I get the feeling that Randy Rigby’s responses are made completely independently of what the Jazz are actually doing.


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