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Bits from Randy Rigby Interview, 8/27

August 29, 2014
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randy rigby

You signed Kevin Murphy today. Talk about that.
Well, you know what, we’re really, we’re rounding out our schedule. We’ve had some good looks with these players, from both our summer leagues, from previous experience, and we’re feeling very good about the addition of Kevin.

We added Brock Motum, came on as well, to our group, being maybe another one (audio skips) soon, and I think we’re getting to a place that (audio skips).

We’re gonna rock and roll here with this very exciting young team.

You’ve also brought in some new coaches. What can you tell us about that?
Well, you know, we’ve, one of the commitments we made to Quin [Snyder], as he came on with his coaching staff as, and we talked about it with Gail and Greg and Steve Miller, and that was our commitment to the coaching and to his coaching style.

And one of the things that is very important for Quin as a development coach is that he has the, a coaching staff around him that has his same philosophy and style, and that really can work and believes in working, not only in the video rooms and breaking down and looking and preparing, but also at the same time, then, can take what they’re seeing and bring those skillsets and that knowledge also onto the floor, and support the existing coaching staff in really working with these players.

And so, we’ve done that very thing in, with the addition of some additional coaches, who are some great additions for, really, our team.

What is “player development”?
Well, you know, it, particularly with the amount of young players that we have, I mean, we’ve got, now, 19-, 20-, 21-year-old players that are now stepping onto the dance floor of the NBA. And this is the best of the best, in all of basketball.

And we’ve got great young men who have a lotta talent, who have been playing for Kentucky, who have been well scouted out internationally, with a Dante Exum, who has great skillset.

But now they need to be mentored. They need to be taught. They need to be disciplined, and, of what it takes to take that skillset, and really develop it in an NBA-style game, and to understand and be taught what it means to be playing in this league, and to keep that mindset, throughout the whole season.

And it, that’s why it’s gonna take a number of people to really be behind that development and support, part of that support team. And that’s what it means in this development effort, and it takes a real commitment, and I appreciate the support we’ve had from the owners, from the Millers, to really see the wisdom and investing in the cost it takes to really, to put that money into the development of these players.

Having spent time with the national team, is Gordon Hayward a better player now? Do you expect him to be a better player now? Do you think he’ll be utilized better in Quin Snyder’s system than he was in Tyrone Corbin’s system?
I’d answer “yes” to all three of those questions. Let’s take ’em one at a time.

Yes, I expect him to be better than he was in the past, and all indications that were, I’ve heard–I have not seen Gordon yet myself–but what I heard from Dennis [Lindsey] and from Quin in their reports, he looks much better…His body is growing up, and he’s no longer a young man, that he’s, really, more, he’s getting more of a man’s body, and he is physically and mentally, I think, in a better place. …

We’re excited about that. So I’m expecting to see that translate into better leadership, in better commitment. We’ve made a major commitment to Gordon, and we feel good about that commitment, and we’re looking forward to him feeling good about the commitment as well, and being a real leader and an example and one of our veteran players on this team.

And I think that’s, to your second question, one of the things that this experience has provided for him. He is playing now with, again, on a daily basis, that upper echelon of NBA-caliber player, and seeing what it takes to give it and to be competing with those guys day in and day out. And e–picking up maybe some of the other little tricks* and skillsets that maybe some of these other players are using, utilizing in their game.

Hopefully that’ll translate into him bringing it and being a better player and learning some additional things. And I know it’s gonna help him. It’s forced him into playing and being in basketball shape right now in the middle of the summer, so I think that’s going to benefit us. I’m happy that there was no injury with him, that he had a good experience, that I think that is gonna translate into being a better leader and a better player for the Utah Jazz.

* UDQM.

A lot of Jazz fans don’t understand or care about the synergy between the NBA and the D-League. You’re all over this. Talk about what the Jazz’s relationship with the Stampede will be like.
Well, I’m excited about it. I, for example, Dennis and Justin [Zanik] and myself spent literally today, almost four hours, I think, really delving into the D-League and the, and our relationship to it, even at a greater extent, today. And I just say that to indicate the amount of time that we’re putting in to really being committed, and really maximizing this tool for the Utah Jazz.

I really, and you know, we’ve, I’ve seen [that the D-League is a] great tool for teams that immediately embrace it, and get on the cutting edge of it. And that’s who we want to be, is one of those cutting-edge teams who look at how they can take a D-League program, and how they can then utilize it to help make their team better, how they can help use tho–the D-League to make their decision-making better, and to understand, and analyze, players that are out there playing in the D-League, or players that are playing in their system, how they’re responding and performing to it.

And so, we’re really committed to really making this D-League an integral part of Jazz basketball.

Hopefully this means the years of the Jazz/Kevin O’Connor dicking around with the D-League are over.

Would the Jazz be willing to play games overseas?
It’s something that we’re going to be embracing because it’s something that’s going to happen. But I think it’ll be done in a very cautionary way, that we’ll do it kind of a step by step. But the commitment is already there.

We’re not on the docket for any international game, I know, this year or next year. But I know with us having international players, such like Enes [Kanter] coming from Turkey; now Rudy Gobert from France; adding players from Australia with Dante Exum, I’m sure we’re going to be, and as we become a real contender in the future, we’ll be one of those attractive teams that, internationally, that I’m sure we’ll be going over in some places.

Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines (UDQM)
The conversation was about Gordon Monson and Spencer Checketts switching positions with Dennis Lindsey and Randy Rigby.
** Rigby: I’d only hope that that switch isn’t done on a Wednesday of when [Lindsey]’s gonna be, then, the host of The Big Show, on a Wednesday, for me coming on.
** Rigby: So Dennis and I are now, that’s scary to think, of Dennis and I doing The Big Show.
** Checketts: Now we’re getting into sticky territory. I’ll call Greg, see if we can change. (1280)

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