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Bits from Utah Jazz Draft Workout: Cameron Bairstow, Billy Baron, James Bell, Aaron Craft, LaQuinton Ross and Roscoe Smith

June 3, 2014

507 perrin

** How did Aaron Craft shoot the ball today?
I had to remind him a couple times, he’s got his foot on the line. His 3-point shooting, so you know, I told him that’s the worst shot in NBA basketball, foot on the line. So, and I think he understood it. So, he shot it, he made it better than I thought he would, so he has been working on his jump shot. Still has a ways to go.
** Are you still trying to convince agents to let you work out some of the top prospects?
That’s always an ongoing process, and I think moreso this year because of the makeup of our team, and the positions of where our draft picks are. So, it’s, I’m still talking to quite a few agents trying to see if we can still get certain players in.
** Does the possibility of Gordon Hayward not being here next year enter into your draft discussions?
Nope. That doesn’t come into thinking, ’cause we fig–we think we’re gonna have Gordon with us next year.


** How did the workout go?
It was all right. Yeah, it’s a different situation playing with a 3-on-3, and all the different stuff they put us in. It’s a lot different from the college style, and so I’m still getting used to it, but I think it’s getting better workout to workout.
** What are you hoping to show teams?
Just my strength, in terms of being a physical body. You know, I think I can play well within a system, and find ways to contribute without necessarily scoring the ball as well. So I think I’m showing what I’ve been able to do offensively this past season; also showing different aspects of toughness.
** Has never met Andrew Bogut, but knows and has gotten advice from Patty Mills (“Patty”), Matthew Dellavedova (“Delly”) and Aron Baynes (“Baynes”). Also knows Dante Exum.


** Third workout; all have been very similar.
** How did the workout go? / Comment on the altitude
I think it went really well. You know, I heard a, you hear a lot about the altitude…but it wasn’t too bad. You feel that sometimes, but we had good energy in the gym. All six of us really competed hard, whether it’s just shooting competitions or 3-on-3. We all played really hard, and things went really smoothly today.
** Asked to further elaborate on the altitude
If you’re not from out here, it takes awhile to get adjusted. I think that it’d probably take me a few weeks. There’s really nothing you can do to prepare for something like that. I never experienced anything like that. But it wasn’t too difficult, too demanding.
** What kind of player do you see yourself as in the NBA?
I have all the skills that a guard needs to have to be in this league. I like to consider myself as a point guard, but the true point guard’s kinda losing its image, you know, with guys who are coming out, becoming scoring point guards. I think, you know, I can knock down threes. I can come up with the pick and roll, hit open guys. You know, I’m doing whatever the team wants me to do to provide a winning culture. You know, I’ll run through the wall if I’m picked. So yeah, I bring, I think I bring a few different dimensions that can help you.


** Third workout
** How did the workout go? / Comment on the altitude
It went well. Altitude might’ve got the best of me, but it went well…I was in shape, but it’s just different, coming from the low altitude in Philadelphia and coming out here.
** What were you trying to showcase today?
All my strength. My defensive presence. My shot-making ability and my athleticism.


** How did the workout go? / Comment on the altitude
It was good. We had a great group of guys that worked pretty hard. Conditioning’s a little different here so you know, everyone’s gotta fight through it. So, it was good. Good workout, good quick workout. It was good.
** How important was it to show you can be a consistent shooter?
I think it’s gonna be helpful. It’s amazing how much work and time you can put in once you’re out of school and you have, you know, more time on your hands. So, obviously I’m not where I need to be, but I feel really comfortable with the improvement that I’ve made since the season’s been out. Been shooting a lot, and I’m happy with the progress.
** What can you bring to the Jazz?
It’s my understanding that the Jazz weren’t great defensively, putting it lightly. You know, they were last in the league defensively this year, so that’s definitely something that I think that I could bring to the team, bring to the table. Just a little harrassment here and there on the opposing guard, and hopefully bring some other guys along with me. And just a great locker room guy that’s gonna bring other guys with me, work hard, and do whatever it takes to win.
** Who do you model your game after?
I think, honestly a guy like Kirk Hinrich. Obviously, he can shoot it a little better than I can right now, but that’s something that I’m working towards. A–but he’s a tough-nosed guy that isn’t afraid to stick his nose where he needs to. Gritty guy, defensive guy, and he does what it takes to win. And I think that’s something that I definitely could do at the next level.
** Could you co-exist with Trey Burke in the backcourt?
You know, Trey and I knew each other before Ohio State-Michigan. So, I think we’d be able to do that. I think there would definitely be some competitive practices, some competitive things going on. And that would be awesome, and I think that would only help the team.


** How did the workout go? / Comment on the altitude
Workout was good, and got adjusted to this altitude probably towards the end. It, you really don’t feel it at first, but then it kinda get to you a little bit all the time, you know, through the workout. But I think the workout was pretty good. I think I shot the ball pretty well, so it was pretty good.
** What about your game is NBA-ready?
My size, and being able to shoot and score the ball. So, I think I can definitely help an NBA team on that, in that department.
** What’s the most important thing you can show teams?
Just don’t get outside of what you normally do. Every, I think every team, most, nine times out of ten, know what you’re good at, what you’re not good at. And I think it’s just building on those things that you are good at, and not tryna play outside of yourself.
** Where do you see yourself positionally in the NBA?
I would love to play the three, but you know, some teams, depending on how some teams play, they wanna play small, they’re not gonna be able to play that stretch four too, but definitely I’m going in as a three.
** Could Trey Burke and Aaron Craft play together on the same team?
Yeah, I think so, because they’re two different players. I think Trey Burke is more offensively-minded, and Craft more defensively-minded. And I think how, they’ll find some way to play with each other, man. I think NBA coaches and staff, they’ll do a good job of letting ’em play together.


** How did the workout go? / Comment on altitude
Workout went very well. We definitely competed. All the guys went hard, you know? The coaches, everybody was tremendous. As an individual standpoint, you know, I think, I’m very pleased, very satisfied, you know? It’s what I expected, you know, to go hard to bump. And altitude didn’t really affect a lot of us that well, though.
** On working out 3-on-3 vs. playing 5-on-5 (UDQM)
It’s definitely more difficult, you know, because, you know, it’s more help defense. You have to be more precise on your move. As a basketball player, you know, I like it, you know? It’s more competitive. You know, you definitely, you can just lock on your man, you know, not have to worry about, you know, another guy you try to backdoor. Anything goes, so it’s more fun and more competitive.
** Where do you see yourself positionally in the NBA?
I see myself as a power three. I’m a power three. You know, somewhat like a Kawhi Leonard. You know, can, definitely could play in the point or perimeter. I also can play inside, you know? Could definitely, you know, back down [smaller] guards. Definitely can, you know, have a, extremely, a lot of mismatches, you know? Stretch the floor for the team, you know? So I’m, I definitely see myself as a power three, and you know, just run the floor, and you know, just getting, you know, extra possessions.

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