Courtesy of Eric Patten, Aubrey Freck..."/> Courtesy of Eric Patten, Aubrey Freck..."/>

Clippers Media Day 2013-2014 Quotes


Courtesy of Eric Patten, Aubrey Freckman, and Timothy Weeks


On where he thinks the team can improve:

“I think the first thing is the corny part, is that we need to come together as a group all the time. Not only when things are good. That is the biggest adjustment this team has to make. They have to become that. They have to become a team. We did a couple things last year defensively that we have to do better. Guard the 3-point line better, get back on defense on transition. I think offensively we have to create more space. A lot of time D.J. (DeAndre Jordan) or Blake [Griffin] were not on the floor in fourth quarters. We want to have them on the floor as much as we can. We want to prove that they can play together in space. We want to run more. There are a lot of things we have to do to be a better basketball team. We’ve proven that we can win games but we haven’t proven as that we can sustain winning in the Playoffs and that is what we are here for.”

On whether or not he will play Chris Paul reduced minutes in the regular season:

“I want to let him roll. I’m not going to play him 45 minutes a night but I’m going to play him. How old is Chris?  (28)  There you go. I get it. You want to preserve everybody on your team but you also want them to play the right amount of minutes so they don’t ever lose rhythm as well. Yeah, I get that. If we are playing well hopefully there are a lot of guys on the bench who are playing. That’s what we should be striving for anyway.”


On championship expectations:

“We have higher exceptions for ourselves than anybody else, but at the same time we’ve made strides as a program but we don’t have any championships, and that’s the goal, that’s the bottom line. We haven’t’ really accomplished anything yet. Our whole goal is to accomplish that so the expectations, we put those on ourselves as well and that’s the way it should be. We don’t feel like we’ve arrived or really put ourselves into that category until we win a championship. So that’s kind of the way that we look at it.”


On how he will balance being a player with being the President of the NBAPA:

“It’s going to be a work in progress. I’ve actually had an opportunity to be a player rep as a young player in the league and then I actually got on the executive committee to take the role as the president. It’s a huge responsibility but luckily, we have an amazing executive committee and a great group that the player association’s going to be helping me with everything. It’s not just about me personally. We haven’t had the conversation but, it’s going to take all of us players to really get the union back to where we like it at. I’m going to call on these two guys [Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan] and a lot of other guys because we just want to continue to try and grow the game and make it… even bigger than it is right now.”

On the process of building throughout the regular season:

“For us, it’s going to be all about the process. We can’t control what people say or the hype or the expectations or the good things people say or the bad things that people say. I think for us, it’s going to be about the guys in our locker room. It’s about us coming in to practice every day and preparing and giving ourselves the opportunity to win. That’s what you want at the end of the day. Us three as the leaders of this team, we’ve got to make sure that we come in and prepare hard every day and everything else hopefully will take care of itself.”

On Doc Rivers:

“I’ve spent a little bit of time with Doc. We’ve talked a couple times but with all of us professional athletes and anything, you always want someone to push you and motivate you. The first meeting I had with Doc, he pretty much told me that I wasn’t anything. He told me that I hadn’t done anything in this league and he was right. You don’t always want somebody who’s going to tell you everything that you want to hear.”


On defensive approach:

“I know that defensively, it starts with me down there. I have to communicate to my teammates better. I have to set an example as well. Defense is my main priority and offense is going to come second. I’m confident. [Doc Rivers] makes me even more confident, so do my teammates. It’s going to take me to go out there and play the right way and help our team win.”


On his level of anticipation for the season and his expectations:

“I think that once the summer is over with the first practice it’s like the first day of school you just can’t sleep the night before because you’re excited. For us it’s setting the tone from day one. The Clippers this summer showed that they were serious and that they wanted to be a championship contender. So, they got a coach with a championship pedigree. Doc is one of the best coaches out there. He has been one of the best coaches out there for the past few years so with him at the helm we are going to be in good shape.


On coming back to play in his hometown of Los Angeles:

“This is so surreal. I can’t believe it to this day. When I first signed here I didn’t want to look at that. My first goal was really just to come to the Clippers and really just try to help this team win. All that other stuff is going to come. It’s good to have family and friends here, but at the same time I’ve got a job to do.”

On his role as a backup point guard after mostly starting the last three seasons:

“If I have to sacrifice my role as a starter and give up some of my aspirations and my dreams just to win a championship, I’ll do that. I think that’s part of sacrifice. I think that’s a part of being on a good team and helping the team win. I’m all up for that. It wasn’t easy, but at the same time if that’s what it’s going to take to win a championship, then I’m all up for it.”


On being a part of the Clippers’ turnaround:

“It is exciting for me because I was here my rookie year almost 11 years ago and we were the doormat of the NBA, and didn’t win too many games, and were kind of looked at as the little brother and kind of got a bad rap. So, to see the organization come full circle and see my career come full circle and to say the Clippers have a chance to win a championship, is an amazing thing to say. And I’m glad I’ve got a chance to be a part of that.”


On his offseason approach:

“Each of us after the season, I’m sure we go home and evaluate how we played the previous year. You come in and just start early working hard. Really, in every aspect of your game, whether it’s the small fundamentals, free throw shooting, left-hand, right-hand layups, you know coming back a better basketball player, both mentally and physically, is going to help your team. And that’s what we all want to do in the offseason.”


On earning minutes as a rookie:

“I’m definitely ready for the challenge. I’m willing do anything I need to do to get minutes on the floor. Coach [Rivers] knows what I’m able to do, shoot the ball and defend. I’m ready to just do that in training camp. And just try to work my way into earning minutes for this team.”


On how perceives role for himself, Byron Mullens and Jared Dudley:

“Our goal is to compliment the core. I think all of us have a skill-set and a personality that fits in. There’s not going to be any stepping on toes or anything with me at least. I think I’m a complimentary piece to what they already had.”


On team chemistry building over the summer:

“I think that’s one thing you worry about when you come to a new team, you know, how am I going to get along with these players? But since day one when I got here, I’ve been hanging out with Blake and DeAndre and all of the guys that were here.”


On the power of building team chemistry and trust:

“It’s good to have a locker room where everybody likes each other. It makes it a lot easier just because in basketball you’ve got to have sacrifice. You’ve got to be able to give up for one of your teammates. Getting to know them on a personal level makes it easier. When you know someone, and you know J.J. [Redick] and he’s married or I have kids, you know them and respect them, it’s a lot easier when you’re on the court.”