“I think one of the most important things for a young player’s development is that they understand that they will play when deserve the right to play. I think it inhibits a guy’s development when he’s simply handed minutes and doesn’t have to do anything to earn them and thus there’s no reason to work harder or change the way you play.”
Reflecting on his 12th season playing pro ball:
“I began it with big determination fighting for a spot in Detroit, with no results. I went to the gym EACH and EVERY day to prepare myself to be the most ready as possible when the holy occasion would have come.”
“Every time I see a shot go up, it’s like a pass to me. Guys focus on points and getting assists. My goal is to go out and get 20 rebounds a night.”
After the Detroit Pistons 7th straight win:
“They’ve worked harder. They’ve been more attentive. A lot more together. We don’t have guys that are getting concerned about who’s in the game, or their playing time, or their shots.”
“Go out there and play the right way, move the ball and get shots for everybody.”
If you build the right habits and take care of the right things, then you’re going to be in a position to perform at as a high a level as you can, because so many other things come into it that you have no control over.
I’ve been really honest with them. There’s a laziness to our team. There is. It’s not that guys won’t work. They come out here and they work every day. So I’m not saying they’re lazy people. But we have some lazy habits in our game that – until we correct them – we’re going to have a hard time winning.
Our energy level in general, at both ends – half court, full court – needs to improve. We’ve talked about that a lot as a team. It’s probably the No. 1 priority and encompasses a lot of things. We’ve got to get a higher energy level, a better motor. I don’t totally know how to do that. A lot of that is within you. If I could only change one thing and I could wave a magic wand and change it, that would be my thing. We have to play with higher energy because it would take care of a lot of things. We do a lot of walking and jogging.”
On Kentavious Caldwell-Pope:
You know where confidence comes from? Confidence comes from work. I honestly believe that, in anything any of us does. If you’re prepared, you tend to be more confident, and that guy’s worked his butt off. He got ready, he had a great summer league, he continued to work the entire summer, he’s worked virtually every day with (assistant coach) Bob Beyer — every day. They watch film, they work on stuff, he works in the weight room.
He knows he’s ready. It’s hard to be that confident if you haven’t prepared yourself, and he has, and I think that’s what leads to his confidence. If you’re shooting hundreds of shots every day, and you’re watching the ball go in, go in, go in, go in, yeah, it raises your confidence. If you don’t do that, I don’t know what you base your confidence on.