These Weeks in the Utah Jazz
One. Rudy Gobert on staying in Utah long term: Yeah, why not, you know? I mean, I, obviously I love to live there and I want to win, like I say. So if it’s, you know, the goal is to win a championship very soon, then there’s no reason to leave. You know, I love the coach, I love the fans, I love the organizations, and there’s no reason for me to think about leaving.
Two. Gail Miller on Utah and black players: We always try to help [black players] integrate. We have mentors that help the young players with managing money and doing things that help keep them out of trouble. I think that’s important for young players…
It’s just doing everything you can to make [Salt Lake City] a comfortable place for them. I know — big names probably will never come here, but it’s not because of the community. It’s because they don’t get the press that they would get somewhere else. They don’t get the contracts that they would get somewhere else. So I think those are the things that keep them from coming here. It’s not the community.
Three. Gordon Hayward on the difference veteran presence makes in the locker room: This time last year, we all would’ve been booking our flights to wherever we were going on vacation, shipping cars. People would be outta here. There’s just definitely a different vibe around the locker room, a different feel, and a lot of that, you know, the vets have made their presence known and have really helped us, and I think they’ve been instrumental to our success this year.
Four. Jerry ♥
Five. Joe Ingles on Pau and Marc Gasol in 2015:
Yeah, I do have a great friendship with them. I didn’t play with them. During the [NBA] lockout, I was playing with Barcelona and they both practiced with — they’re from, or they live in Barcelona, so they both practiced with us for the three or four months.
And it was actually a bit of a coincidence, but I was injured a little bit at the time, and so wasn’t playing all the games, and when the team would go away [on road trips], they were really good with having me over their house and just making me feel welcome while living in Barcelona by myself.
So we did, we kinda grew into a pretty good relationship, and I got on with them really well, and yeah, happy for ’em both being starters in the All-Star Game.
Ingles, asked in 2017 if he’s friends with Pau and Marc Gasol:
I mean, I’m not really friends with anyone, to be honest. I don’t really like people in general. … I mean, I know them. I mean, it’s, it is what it is.
Six. Frank Layden on resting players and Karl Malone: The Jazz didn’t fool around, and players even came to us from other teams and said, “Ooh, they expect you to be on time here. They expect you to be dressed right.” You know, and we’re not listening to, you know, “I got a hangnail and I can’t play.”
You know, talking about, you know, guys now. Resting players. Let me tell you a story about that. You know, and I’m not criticizing. Y–we’ve always played too many games. We know that. The season’s too long. The games are too long, for the physical body. It’s gonna burn out.
But you know, we were playing down in Albuquerque, and Karl Malone, his index finger gets bent back. I mean, it’s against his wrist. And so he runs in and I’m, oh my God, when I saw it, I almost threw up. And then the doctors were around. I mean, “Well, we gotta take him in, get X-rays. We’ll probably have to operate” and everything.
The next thing, mrrrraaaaaahhhh, there’s Karl and he pulls the finger back and straightens it out and tells [Don] Sparky [Sparks], our trainer, “Tape it up.”
So, after the game, someone said to him, “Well, did it hurt?” and everything. And he says, “You’re darn right it hurt.” He says, “But I’ll tell you something. A lot of people came here to see me play, and I’m not gonna let them down.” That was an exhibition game…It wasn’t even about winning the game or doing anything else, but how many fans came to see Karl Malone. A lot.
You know, now, is that something? I mean, could you imagine now, all right, that someone — Jerry Sloan saying, “Well, John [Stockton], we’re gonna rest you tonight. You’re not gonna play.” And the next thing, they’d be in a fistfight. You know, I mean, that’s the way it was. So, it’s a mental attitude. You’re gonna talk about being tired, you’ll be tired. Everybody’s tired. The other guys are tired too. …
The owners, the board of directors, the people, they’re in it to make money. We never forget what Red Auerbach said. So why not play 200 games? Why don’t we do what the Globetrotters do? Play every night. You know, they would do it if they could. …
But we move on with the idea that it is professional basketball, then show up and play. And shut up. You know, I mean, let’s move on. [The number of games] is the way it is. You know, and if the players don’t play and the fans keep coming, then so be it.
Seven. Derrick Favors, asked who would be his dream celebrity to show up to Game 2: Sanaa Lathan, probably. Sanaa Lathan. That’s my dream crush. My girl knows that too. So, yeah. It’s all good with her. She knows. It’s all good.
Favors in 2012, asked for the three people he would have dinner with, dead or alive: She a actress. Ohh. She’s, she’s beautiful. Sanaa Lathan.
Favors in 2013, again asked for the three people he would have dinner with, dead or alive: Sanaa Lathan. Imma have to go with Sanaa Lathan the whole time…Just me and her, man. And my girlfriend know this too. I told her, I said, “Man, if we go out one night and I see Sanaa Lathan, you know, you gon have to be mad at me. ‘Cause I’m going over there, I’m saying something to her.”
Favors in 2015: *names one of his twin daughters Sanaa.*
Eight. Dennis Lindsey on Joel Bolomboy: I was sitting with Phil Johnson, who still does some scouting, and so, Coach Johnson said several times his phy–his athleticism, his want to do good, is at the highest level. As soon as we get his basketball experience and knowledge on knowing how to play matching that, we have something…Joel Bolomboy’s care and character matches his athleticism. So, we have high hopes for him. Now, I can’t say that it’s gonna work out, work out here.
Lindsey on Trey Lyles: The competition for [the] minutes [Lyles got last year] went up, and it’s, of, I’m very confident, for example, that if Trey gets consistent minutes here or somewhere else, he’ll be a very good player, and very strategically fit with Rudy and Derrick in their abilities as well.
Nine. Quotes about Boris Diaw:
Quin Snyder: He’s got a diverse set of interests, which include the playoffs.
Ten. Unintentional Dirty Quote Machines of the Week (UDQM)
** Craig Bolerjack: No spillage, by the way. (H/T @5kl)
** Steve Starks on the hiring of Dennis Lindsey: For the reasons he described, we were fortunate enough that he came.
** Lindsey on drafting Rudy Gobert: He was going to slide lower than where he had him, and we were fortuitous.
** Lindsey on injuries: It’s hard. It’s hard as a head coach to know that someone could be available, but the greater good is to be very patient with guys and their bodies.
** Gordon Hayward on playoff scheduling: It’s kind of weird having all that downtime the last couple days. You wanna just get back in.
** Matt Harpring on Joe Johnson shot: Come on, Joe. How deep can you get? That’s ridiculous.
** Harpring on Johnson shot: A little herky-jerky this, and then the hesitation, and then all of a sudden you see an explosion. Boom.
** Harpring: Paul Pierce released on Joe Johnson, just for a half second.
** Quin Snyder after Game 2: They got in there a lot of ways.