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Bits from Dennis Lindsey, Sam Amick, Rodney Hood and Gordie Chiesa Interviews

July 11, 2017
tags: , ,

On the impact of the time it took Gordon Hayward to “write his blog”
As it did drag out, were there things that were moving real quick? Absolutely. But we had gone as far, this far, so we wanted to, you know, get to the very end. And, you know, right or wrong, you know, I’ll be judged on that and then we’ll move forward. …

We were really concerned when he decided that he was gonna take visits, really on two matters. One, you know, there’s a ceremonial thing, a parade thing that we weren’t going to be able to have just ’cause Gordon and, was familiar with our situation.

So, if we show him the practice facility renovation or the renovation that’s going over at Vivint Smart Home Arena, it’s like, well, you’re not showing me a lot that [I haven’t] seen a thousand times. Or, even the plans on the renovation. So, there was a little bit of that.

But the overriding point is, in life timing means a lot. And so, just the fact that that, that it took time to go visit cities — and again, I don’t begrudge anybody who’s making an occupational decision to go and see the actual city and where they’re working and who they’re working with. It only stands to reason.

But we knew when — originally we were told they were gonna take meetings, and then it shifted to traveling to a couple cities. We knew that those 72 hours were gonna be really, really critical and that we could be letting a few things go off the board because of it.

On Rodney Hood’s role going forward
We have to lift him as a primary wing now. When Rodney Hood was out without Gordon Hayward on the court, his usage went up and in an odd way — and I don’t know if this is anecdotal evidence or not — his efficiency went up.

It was quite impressive to actually look at Rodney and Rodney’s performance, moreso because Rodney needs the ball to contribute. He’s a good pick and roll player. He’s a good player off the dribble.

And so, our talk to Rodney is, is reliability [and] availability will be the two best abilities regarding Rodney Hood. It’s not basketball skills. It’s not character. It’s not intelligence. It’s not knowing how to play. It’s just now he’s moving into a primary role, and we think he’ll be able to handle it. But he’s gotta be able to prove that.

When did Hayward first decide he was going to Boston?
I’ll say this much. The, you know, the idea that he was really torn and the Jazz pulled at the heartstrings and had him really considering Utah the night before, that, you know, I’d be, I have not heard that from Gordon’s mouth personally.

So, the stuff that you have, you know, that I had heard firsthand that, you know, was supposedly coming from Gordon, was a lot of noise about Boston. The whole day before, a lot of teams, a lot of rival agents definitely thought it was Boston. Like, 100 percent.

You know, you — beyond that, I don’t know. I think, the other stuff I’d hear that I don’t have total clarity on is the George Hill factor, and the fact that they — there was a lot of noise that once George was clearly not coming back [to Utah], that Gordon was out of there.

And that was, you know, that intel was kind of hard to decipher, because I know a lot of folks said that the [Ricky] Rubio deal was, you know, was good enough for Gordon, and that that was gonna get the job done. But it was puzzling, because George was under the impression that Gordon was out of there if he wasn’t back. I, you know, that much I know. And next thing you know, you know, they’re doing Rubio and then he’s, Gordon’s going to Boston. …

Gordon is also a guy, I mean, there was a ton of noise obviously about his wife and what she wanted. And so, that part, you know, everybody’s who’s married kinda gets the fact that, you know, it’s a 50-50 deal and everybody weighs in with their opinion. And so, you know, maybe it’s true that she was looking for a change of pace.

On what happened the day of the announcement
What I know is this, that Gordon was telling a lot of people around him that it was Boston. And obviously that got out, and you know — and even more specifically, there was a lot of noise that when the story had been first broken by Chris Haynes of ESPN, that the announcement was coming, you know, within 20 or 30 minutes of that story having broken.

And then at that point — here’s where it gets complicated and here’s where I can’t provide all the answers, and it’s a longer conversation, but the Players’ Tribune component has really complicated things when it comes to breaking news, not only because the players are trying to break it themselves, but because you have a business relationship between the website and the athlete…

Next thing you know, we’ve got ourselves a delay, of hours. …

The article itself, it really seemed like, “OK, you know, y–now we’ve got the piece ready for Boston, and let’s add in a couple of graphs, throw in a few slights at the media” — which I thought was unnecessary.

And you know, listen, I don’t think anybody’s reputations were negatively impacted by this. I think if anything, it just doesn’t make, you know, kinda his camp look very good. Only they know why they played it the way they did.

Did you have a sense in San Diego that Gordon Hayward was going to Boston?
I didn’t know. You know, we had a really good conversation, you know, after he met with the Millers and Dennis Lindsey and coach. And you know, it was a good conversation. We didn’t know. He did a pretty good job of hiding it.

Do you feel you’re the guy now and have to up your scoring average to 20, 22 points a game?
Yeah, I mean, I gotta get a lot better, you know, and I’ve been doing that this summer. You know, I’ve been gearing towards that, and you know, I think everybody has to improve. You know, once you miss a guy like that, everybody has to get better and help with that…

I mean, I need to [up my scoring]. I know it’s easy to point towards me, but like I said, everybody needs to, you know, up their play. You know, e–from me, myself, Rudy [Gobert], to you know, Ricky coming in, Joe Ingles; everybody has to do more than we were expected to do last year.

On how the Gordon Hayward situation was handled
Troubling. Yeah, I wish he would’ve told the Jazz what he was thinking much sooner, so the Jazz could quickly pivot.

By “sooner,” do you mean on Tuesday when he made the announcement, or Monday when the Jazz were visiting him?

Monday. Sunday…From the Jazz point of view, they did everything possible they could to have their best foot forward, including Gail Miller, God bless her, go down to San Diego for one more “sales pitch.”

I mean, I have a hard time [with] after seven years being there that you have, the owner has to go down and give you one more sales pitch. That’s troubling to me…[The Jazz] found out where they really stand, and that’s, again, that is very alarming.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Paul Johnson permalink
    July 11, 2017 10:21 pm

    From everything I have read and heard Hayward was about 95% sure he wanted to leave the Jazz and go to Boston months before the season ended–and perhaps for an even longer period of time than that (Trevor Booker implied that Boston was Gordon’s preference at least a year prior to his free agency).

    Hayward was very clever to keep quiet and make the Jazz think they had a legitimate chance to re-sign him. That kept the Jazz from trading him away to another team prior to free agency like they did with D-Will (which may not have been as good a situation for him in his “contract year,” depending on the team to which he was traded). That also gave him leverage with other teams and another option in case his “dream job” with the Celtics somehow went sour. However, by the start of free agency he should have just had his deal brokered with the Celtics and immediately announced it (and he could have given the Jazz a head’s up prior to that time, so they could have been ready to replace him at the beginning of free agency).

    His delay in making his decision seemed to be all about feeding his own ego and demonstrating to the basketball world that he was a big time star similar to LeBron or Kevin Durant—which he did to the extreme detriment of the Jazz. The fact that Danny Ainge is a “tool” and wouldn’t even agree to throw the Jazz a bone by giving them a sign-and-trade deal where they could get a big trade exception (which would have cost Boston absolutely nothing)–or the fact that Gordon and his agent didn’t insist on Boston doing such a sign and trade deal–just adds insult to the injury. The reports that he was “torn” about his decision seem to indicate to me that he might have had a little bit of a conscience and at the last minute felt a bit bad about being such a dick to the Jazz after everything they had done for him. It didn’t motivate him to require the Celtics to do a sign and trade to help the Jazz as a requirement of signing him, however, so even that just seems to me like a PR spin.

    • Jeff permalink
      July 12, 2017 1:42 am

      This is the scenario that makes the most sense to me. I think he was talking with Stevens about playing in Boston with him the day he was hired.


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