Bits from Dennis Lindsey Interview, 9/24
Player body talk
I do think you’ll notice — we had some coaches in, and one local high school coach noted, and it was pretty good, that you can, you could tell visually the players who had been in the program because there’s, their bodies were just more mature and developed.
So you’ll notice some physical differences in Gordon [Hayward]. Derrick [Favors]’ body looks unbelievable. It’s what you would draw up as a prototypical NBA body.*
* So, Karl Malone’s body?
On the Jazz’s pace of play
We were…a good running team [last year]. We could send three back on the defense, get our defense set with our unique size and length, athleticism. And we were a very good defensive rebounding team, so we could secure the ball.
We didn’t advance it up — even though we didn’t play with the greatest pace, one thing that statistics showed us is the ball actually moving, we were superior, and the actions within, once we moved into the halfcourt, our pace of the action moving. So screening the ball, swinging from one side, cuts, back cuts, pin downs, was very high; actually the highest in the league.
In my opinion, we grinded teams with our pace in the halfcourt offensively. So, and then, there’s ball possession, right? … We just had the ball a lot, so the other team can’t score. We weren’t the best shooting team. We weren’t awful. But it allowed us to get the ball in the glass.
And then we, I believe we were top four, top five in offensive rebounding percentage, and number one in actually finishing. So, those were Derrick and Rudy [Gobert] in particular; Trevor Booker as well.
So, some–you just want a virtuous cycle, right? Things that you can replicate. And I sit here today and I think we can replicate that. So, do we want to be a one-pass-and-shot-goes-up team, and the integrity of our balance is then compromised? That’s open for debate.
So, it’s not pace, slow pace is all bad, all good. And neither is a fast-paced team all bad or all good. It’s the other parts that put the puzzle together. And again, it’s what you can replicate.
** People calling Raul Neto “Raul” with a hard “R” but immediately correcting himself: Dennis Lindsey
Is Tibor Pleiss a guy who can come in and help you in short order?
We’ll see. I’m not sure yet. Quin [Snyder] and I have had quite a few conversations. He’s a very intriguing talent. He played really well, really efficiently, this summer with the German national team.
You’ll soon see, much like Rudy, he’s very eager to please. He’s really task-oriented. So our fans — he’s gonna give you everything he’s got, so our fans will gravitate to his unique size and his effort. I think that’s a place to start.
And then, he’s an excellent free throw shooter. So, some of the notes, like when I got back from the EuroBasket in Berlin watching him play is, you can play him when you’re in the bonus, a little bit…Tibor, as he gets stronger, will get fouled some…He’s close to a 90 percent free throw shooter.
He’s an excellent finisher at the rim. We’ll see on the perimeter shooting if we’re able to deploy that. There’s some argument on pick and pops. Can he get his feet down? Will we want to pick and pop him, because he’s such a good roller?
I think that’s what, a little bit of what the European coaches have got to, is he’s such a presence screening, that he can really get guys open. And I noticed that in a couple pickup games, that he, when he screens you, you’re screened.*
And so, Gordon, Rodney [Hood], Alec [Burks], those guys, Trey [Burke] pulling up, you can imagine that. And he’s a little underrated defensively. He just is, just has a really good presence.
So I think as we understand him, his body, help him improve his strength, there’s something intriguing there, and we’ll see what it means relative to the team going forward.
* This needs to be on a T-shirt.
Update on Alec Burks
He’s full speed. There’s always going to be some ongoing shoulder-upper thoracic mobility exercises. He was doing that prior to the injury…but he’s doing well. He still has his dynamic athletic ability.
I can see him at the free throw line a great deal. He’s really passed the ball well when we’ve played pickup basketball, and he’s very anxious to get back.
He, Alec doesn’t have a lot of interests, and he really loves basketball. That’s one of the things that I love about him, is that he’s single-minded in his focus. And so, I think we have a very hungry, motivated Alec Burks.
You talked about how good Derrick Favors’ body looks. Is he at a point now where he can be a hungry offensive player and call for the ball? Will there be a time and place for him to do that with regularity?
Absolutely. An–yes to all those questions. I think the hunger, last year, grew. I, in many ways — Derrick always told us there was more offense there. And going forward, I think how we’ve practiced, the pace that he’s practiced, you just really see a lot of forward momentum with him.
I was, he was doing some individuals this week, and pulling out a few things that — just with his superior balance, his length, his, just, total body power, for lack of better description. And then there’s some touch, and there were a few things that were very reminiscent with Al Jefferson, with, in interior moves that he was working on.
And so, the progression in the last 14, 16 months have, has been amazing to me, and I’m just so proud of him. He’s really put a lot into it, and he wants the responsibility of the team. And so, I think you’ll see — if you’re asking can he be more gregarious, you know, towards the want of the ball, I think that, I think you’ll see that. (1280)