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Q Considering your personality and philosophies, how well suited are you to coaching such a young team?
A It's going to be interesting. As I tell myself and tell management, we have to have patience. We've got to. I'm an extremely, extremely competitive guy. I love winning more than anybody, so that's going to be a test for me. If we get into a streak where it gets a little bumpy, where's my patience?
Q KG was this franchise's face for more than a decade. Who is it now?
A I think that will be painted for us. You can't make it somebody. That's got to be something that emerges. Nobody envisioned when KG came here as an 18-year-old rookie that he'd be what he turned out to be. You can't envision it. It might not be just one player.
Q What will this franchise miss most about KG?
A Oh, geez. We're going to miss everything. He's a Hall of Fame player. We'll miss his enthusiasm, his versatility, his smile. He played as hard as he possibly could every night, whether he had good games or bad games. His personality was just infectious. There were a lot of things that I think I'm going to find out I took for granted with him.
Q When your first head-coaching job in Cleveland ended six years ago, some players there said you didn't communicate well with them and they didn't know their roles. In hindsight, was that valid criticism?
A I was a player. You hear one of two things when guys are not playing: Either, 'There's no communication' or 'I don't know my role.' I'm a straight shooter. These guys will know their roles. I will tell you how it is and what my beliefs are. And I expect the same the other way, whether it's positive or negative. You never know when something is brewing if you keep it inside.
Q This team was 20-20 when you were named head coach last January. It was 12-30 thereafter. Why didn't it play better?
A I don't know, a combination of things. I don't ever want to take over in the middle of a season again. When that happens, there's a lot of things going on behind the scenes that you try to determine which fire is the biggest and put out that fire you think is either the biggest or will become the biggest. Change like that is tough. I keep making excuses why we didn't play better. I just think things festered to the point of no return, through not only our play on the floor but in the locker room.
Q Why are you the right guy for this job right now?
A Time will tell if I'm the right guy. That's a question you'll have to ask Glen [owner Glen Taylor]. I've been in this game for 25 years and I'm in this game for no other reason than I'm a coach and nothing more. I've got a great work ethic. I've bounced around. I'm not going to become a financial planner. This is who I am. When I'm done working, I'm done. I'm retired.
Q You're not going to become a TV analyst?
A [Laughs] No, I'm probably not going to do that. I'm too honest.
Q Do you find yourself looking at that board on your wall often?
A Yes, there's a lot of names up there. A lot of names. Just from that standpoint, this might be one of the competitive camps I've ever been a part of. Like I said, I don't have five guys who everybody knows are our starters and I'm looking for guys to be the sixth, seventh, eighth, ninth man. Everything's open. You can be a starter here.
Jerry Zgoda firstname.lastname@example.org
|Minnesota - LP: V. Worley||3||FINAL|
|Atlanta - WP: P. Maholm||8|
|Cincinnati - WP: A. Simon||7||FINAL|
|NY Mets - LP: B. Parnell||4|
|Los Angeles - WP: H. Ryu||9||FINAL|
|Milwaukee - LP: W. Peralta||2|
|Oakland - LP: J. Parker||1||FINAL|
|Texas - WP: R. Wolf||3|
|Arizona||1||Bottom 6th Inning|
|Washington||0||Bottom 5th Inning|
|Tampa Bay||2||Top 3rd Inning|
|Chicago Cubs - J. Samardzija||6:05 PM|
|Pittsburgh - F. Liriano|
|Detroit - J. Verlander||6:05 PM|
|Cleveland - U. Jimenez|
|NY Yankees - H. Kuroda||6:05 PM|
|Baltimore - J. Hammel|
|Seattle - B. Maurer||6:05 PM|
|LA Angels - J. Williams|
|Philadelphia - C. Lee||6:10 PM|
|Miami - K. Slowey|
|Boston - C. Buchholz||7:10 PM|
|Chicago WSox - H. Santiago|
|Kansas City - J. Shields||7:10 PM|
|Houston - J. Lyles|
|St. Louis - T. Lyons||9:10 PM|
|San Diego - B. Smith|