Bits from Randy Rigby Interview, 6/3
Things that are literally happening in Jazzland
** On the Jazz’s draft workouts
These are some of the top collegiate players, that are fighting and giving their all, to, now, try to make it to a different level, and literally, not e–only to be considered maybe in a top draft pick, but even just to be, having the opportunity to make it and be invited to a summer league, and a veteran league, and make it to that next level, and it just reinforced to me, the talent level that we’re dealing with on this, at this level, with, and with this league. It’s very impressive.
** On the importance of getting draft picks right, as shown by the Golden State Warriors
It’s critical. It’s, and particularly for, well, for all teams. But for ourselves, you know, for smaller markets or for emerging markets, and I would clount* Golden State as one of those emerging markets. He–I, literally, having, you know, quite a dry spell of being able to make the playoffs until, as of late. And now, to see them growing, it shows you how critical it is to really not only have the picks, but able to pull the right trigger of finding those right players, and then becomes the part that is, you know, is the, almost the secret sauce and the unknown sauce, and that is are those players gonna come together…I take my hats* off to the Warriors. They’ve done a very good job.
* Not a typo
** On whether the Jazz will make any dramatic moves in the next few weeks
Well, that’s one of the key things in, really, as we’ve s–tried to be strategic and looked at, literally, every move that we make, of trying to, and that’s what I appreciate from Dennis [Lindsey], in his mind and his direction, is he looks at every move that we make.
** More on his appreciation for Dennis Lindsey’s mind
We were talking about, really, our selection process, and I really appreciate continually seeing Dennis’ mind and watching how he works, and literally saying, if this is what this player’s value, in my mind, is, if we were to take that value, it means maybe more or less than what our pick might be…And as I look back at the moves that we’ve continued to make, we’ve done that very thing, and that’s what’s been the difference for me, in our continued growth and success, and the steps that we’re making as we’re making not only the right moves, but we’re making sure they’re the right value move for us and getting the maximum out of that value for us.
Andrei Kirilenko officially hung it up yesterday.* When you think back on AK’s career, what comes to mind?
* except he didn’t…
Well, number one, a young man with a lot of talent. He was, to me, one of the early foreign pioneers, in really, the league, in, when you look at some of those, that first wave of international players who came into the league, and I, had blazed a lot of ground, that — I think international players, for many of our organizations, coaches, front offices, is, they were many times misunderstood.
And I know a lot of the misunderstanding that I think had fell onto AK, was a lack of just, the public’s perception of his, and because of how he came across sometimes, that was really, not the intention of AK’s. But even though it was what he said, I, it was not what he necessarily meant. But it then, was, he was branded with some of those things.
Now, having said that, would I have continued to like a little more intensity from Andrei Kirilenko? Yes. I think, again, that’s a little bit of maybe that, the style that he had played in, and underneath, in European basketball, that, again, I think it’s had its growth, and they’ve had ways that they’ve needed to improve, and, as they’ve come in to realizing what the NBA is like. There has been some education there that he’s had to go through.
But you know what, from off the court, you couldn’t find a nicer, kinder individual than Andrei Kirilenko, who really, really did love this community. Really was a gentleman. Really had a good heart, and I think a very respectable career.
We want the great basketball minds to weigh in on this. Who is your all-time NBA starting five?
Well, I’ve gotta give you, you know what, I, there’s a little bias here. But I’ll tell you what. The, my point guard is John Stockton. I could argue with Jerry West, but I’ll tell you what, I’m going with John Stockton…
I’m gonna go with the, my shooting guard, I’m gonna call him a shooting guard, and I’m going with Michael Jordan.
I’m gonna go then with, my center position, I’m going with Bill Russell.
Now, my two forwards, wow. Tha–this gets very interesting for me. Ooooh. I love my Mailman. And I’ve gotta go with a small forward. Hmm. Well, I’ll tell you what. LeBron James is, you know what, I could’ve put LeBron in my “two,” “three” or “four” position.* But I would go with LeBron James, just because, his versatility. (1280)