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Bits from Dennis Lindsey Interview, 5/29

June 1, 2015


On the work Rodney Hood has put in so far this summer
Yeah, he needs to calm down and save his best basketball for May and June.

So, no, we’ve, I’m on the Internet, and I’ve, every so often I’ll get a Twitter update or a Vine video of Rodney making his pull-up. I’m as interested as anybody to see his work and progress, and he’s great people…

Frankly, Quin [Snyder] and I both challenged him defensively when he came in, and he was much better defensively his rookie year than we thought he would be. So, you couple that with his size and ability to pull up, and he’s a good passer. We have high hopes for him.

* The point of this quote is this: DL says he’s on Twitter. Back in December 2013, he was asked about joining Twitter and his response was:

You know, I’ve been told by media experts that maybe I should consider that, and you know, typical me, I’m deliberate in making decisions. So it has been something that has been under consideration for awhile, to reach out and make it more personable…

I think you have to [consider it] in today’s age. I don’t think you ever want to look where you’re not technology-savvy or, you know, in some cases, old-school, and not hip. But you know, I, there, it, you know, there are certain parts of the Twitter that obviously would worry, you know, someone in my position.

What can Gordon Hayward get better at?
He and Johnnie Bryant really worked hard at lowering his level off the dribble when he’s breaking through the line of the defense, and dropping his hips, and all the finishes that come out of those situations…

There’s some situations that Quin put him in that, it was a very good vision. You know, Quin had some thoughts and studied him, and turned out he was right. So, I think we can capitalize on Quin knowing him a little bit better after a year with experience.

But closing games, I think, is, Gordon being safer, more fundamentally sound during the last five minutes. We played a lotta close games, and if our defense can hold up and we can build around our unique size and length and youth and mobility and character, then by definition you’ll play a lot of close games.

And so, Gordon and Derrick [Favors] are by definition, again, going to have to be really good closers for us to win our fair share of those games.

What’s going on with Dante Exum?
Well, he looks real big. In a good way, not in a fat way…I’m not sure about height, but he was doing a couple drills the other day, and he had to hike up his shorts to be able to get down and slide, and he’s just a big — you know, he’s 19, so young man’s probably the best description.

But if you’ve ever been around Dante’s dad, who played at North Carolina, he’s a big guy. And so — his dad played in Australia. And so, if he starts taking on the characteristics of Dad, who knows what his body could look like with some dedicated work over the next two or three years.

But his weight’s up, in a good way. He and Isaiah Wright have been working hard this past week, getting in the gym. He’s been with several of our development coaches working on a variety of things, and then Monday heads out to P3 to get some technical analysis.

Mark McKown and some of our people are out there, and the people at P3 are very anxious to get their hands on Dante and test him and go through the paces. He didn’t get the opportunity to do that last year ’cause of national team commitments.

So, it’s safe to say he’s going — he already is very big for the position, but if he keeps moving in that direction, you know, he could be physically unique, I guess would be the best way to describe it.

Is there a player in the league that’s comparable to where you want Dante Exum to be?
Dante’s a little bit of a conundrum now, ’cause he had a really definitive playing style as a young player, where he is an attacker and a driver. Last year, he deferred to all of our young veterans and was more of a setup guy, but a unique defender.

You know, there’s, the old Seattle Supersonics with Nate McMillan as a defensive point guard, was something that, you know, kinda came to top of mind. And he’s even taller than Nate was. So, you just don’t get guys who are 6-6 that have that length that are able to move the way he can move.

So, I think Dante and Quin both get credit. They quickly found out a way for him to contribute to the team in a positive way on the defensive side of the ball.

And then, you know, we’re gonna have to improve his skillset and clean up a couple things, but there’s frankly nothing that is fundamentally broken…It may be a while, like it was for Gordon or Derrick to be able to lead a team offensively, but there’s no reason why we can’t get there in a few years with him. (1280)

One Comment leave one →
  1. June 2, 2015 1:31 am

    I’m so excited for Dante! Summer swoon in full swing and the Finals haven’t even started… *sigh.


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