Bits from Dennis Lindsey Interview, 4/23 (Part 2 of 2)
Are you looking for more experience at the point guard position?
The baseline production of the position needs to get better, but there’s no reason why it can’t. We have very good, young raw material.
Dante [Exum]’s physical dimensions are great, and we started — that, and his mindset and his intelligence, he really impacted the team in a unique way, at 19 years old.
There was a point in time when we were still challenged as a team, I think late December, early January. I, you know, I consistently look at our stat pack on a weekly basis, and it was counter-intuitive, but at one or two points in the season, it was fairly large minutes, Dante was the only player of the group that had a positive plus-minus.
And so, there’s so many things that go into playing that position. There’s so many — we call ’em intangibles, but we’re getting in good enough statistically with on-off numbers, with the SportVU cameras, that we’re s–we’re able to, you know, attach indirectly when someone’s bringing intangibles back to the group.
It may not be a one-for-one correlation. It may be an indirect stat like real plus-minus or defense on and off, and the things of the such, but he, you know, it was unique that when you’re playing with a 19-year-old on a win-challenged team, that you are winning inside of his minutes.
And then obviously when the team turned, it turned in a big way, and I think he was close to plus-5 per 48 minutes when he was on the court.
And there were a lotta reasons that were going into that. One, he wasn’t forcing himself on the game. Two, he knew our schemes and could get us into our offense. Three, at 19 years old, we c–we didn’t know if he’d be a good defender for a number of years.
And with, inside of a few months, he was a plus defender at his position, and now, you know, we’re thinking about him in the terms of being one of the better defenders going forward at that position for the next 10 years.
And you guys know what that means, when the pick and roll is such a large percentage of opposing teams’ attack, to have someone that you have individual integrity that can stay in front of guys.
And then Trey [Burke], you know, we, Trey, it seems like he’s been around for a while, but he’s 22. This should’ve been his senior year at Michigan, and everybody knows about his pull-up ability and his late-clock ability…And Trey’s a dedicated worker. He’s a smart player. He’s safe with the ball, and I think he’ll move forward.
And then we added Bryce Cotton from the D-League, and you guys saw his speed and his ability to score. He’s a good shooter, and what happened with Bryce when we put him in our possessions, our offensive possessions picked up.
And so, we talked about Raul [Neto] as well, and we do have draft picks going forward, and we’ll continue to work with what we have, and then take a deep look at our other alternatives as well.
On Derrick Favors’ personality
I tell you what, people, the, you know, he’s from the south, and he has that, you know, charming Atlanta drawl. But Derrick is a thinker. He has very good insights, and he can rib players and his teammates.
He was getting after Dante in a funny way, and ther–not, in Derrick, the beauty in Derrick is, is he doesn’t have a malicious bone in his body. He’s really good people.
And so I think as, you know, Derrick h–again, it seems like he’s been around forever. He’s 23. We’re just ecstatic with his development, but he’s grown into a leader, in a subtle way.
And you know, he’s very, that relationship between he and Quin [Snyder], those, that key player-coach relationship’s always important. But Quin’s gained a lot of appreciation for Derrick and who he is.
And you know, I’m just thrilled for the guy, and we’re proud to have him, and his humor is good. You just got to, you have to get to know him a little bit, and I think, again, as he gets older, he’ll feel more and more comfortable to show more personality to the public.
On Salt Lake City and Free Agency
Are there certain types of players that wouldn’t fit here? Absolutely. You know, the DNA of the culture of Salt Lake and the Jazz organization, but that’s a little bit of what I was speaking about earlier, is that an important part of your process is the deselection process.
And so, I love it. I love that we won’t go certain places. And to be frank, there are certain backgrounds that line up very well with the Jazz organization. You know, strong parental influence. A player with a significant other. A player that, with a significant other, with child. And, that would really appreciate the family environment we have in our community.
And so, there’ll eventually be that player that will totally get us and will be the right fit. I don’t know if it will be in this free agency, but I’ve said it before [and before]. You know, Reggie White moving from Philly to Green Bay, there will come a day when we will have our Reggie White.
Do you have any concerns about your ability to pay everyone?
We’ll continue to have very good flexibility and ability to maneuver for the next three or four years. And then those contracts will become due and players will make an ex–percentage mark up moving forward because of the new TV deal, and we’ll have to make tough decisions going forward.
But I’m very confident that if the players do their part, if they act the right way, if they develop, if they follow Quin’s lead, if they’re unselfish, that we can keep ’em all, yes. (1280)