I was fortunate enough to get a few minutes with Mike Taylor after yesterday’s game for a TrueHoop Q & A.
Here’s a sampling:
Tell me about Draft Day. Did you expect to have your name called? Were you glued to the tube?
My agent told me that I was projected late first round/early second round. I watched the draft with my family back home in Milwaukee. I stopped watching at, like, #45. I went into my room, and my phone was dead. But I left my agent my sister’s number. So a little later, my sister comes running into my room with her phone. And my agent said, “I’m not sure when you’re going to go, but the Clippers are going to make a trade for you. It was ironic, because I thought I was a higher pick, but that’s been the story of my life. Getting picked so low made me feel that I gotta prove myself. So I was satisfied.
Guarding NBA point guards is a far cry from defending PGs in the Big 12 or the D-League. And Mike Dunleavy is known as a hard-nosed, defense-first coach. How are you adjusting?
I always had a lot of energy. But in college, I was looked upon as a scorer. What I’ve tried to do here is channel that energy into playing defense. I can move quick laterally, and I don’t like anyone beating me off the dribble. I take pride in that.
Coach Dunleavy clearly likes your style, and you got your first NBA start last week. How did that go down?
He told me after we played Utah the first time. He said, “We’re going to start you the next game. It was exciting.
What part of your game do you want to work on the most this season?
Court vision. I want to continue to learn how to be an NBA point guard. It’s a learning process every day.