The days of the Clippers garnering a lottery pick seem to be a thing of the past, but that doesn’t mean ClipperBlog won’t give you a little taste of what’s going on at the overall draft. A select group of draftees, who project to go somewhere in the lottery, met with the media yesterday in New York City. Here are some of the best moments and quotes from the day:
- Lehigh’s C.J. McCollum, who admitted to using Synergy, on how he improved his jump shot so much as a senior:
I think it was a number of things, mainly breaking down film. I broke down essentially every shot I took my junior year. I charted whether I missed it short or long. I wanted to know why I was missing – where I was getting my shots from – and kind of affect those areas.
- McCollum is one of the draftees who stole the show Wednesday. The Lehigh alum, who was an editor at the newspaper in college, speaks about how he was able to balance school, basketball, and working at the paper all at once:
I think just being busy and having a chance to balance your priorities helps build character. When I got hurt, there was a little more free time on my hands.”
- McCollum also makes mention of his plans for after basketball:
I don’t just want to be a sports reporter. I kind of want to be on camera. I always say I have a face for TV so I look forward to getting behind the camera and kind of just display my whole variety.
- Pittsburgh’s Steven Adams on what stoof out in his one year in college in the U.S.:
The different mindset to take in the American side of basketball. I’m from New Zealand. New Zealand basketball is kind of low. You guys are way up there. So being able to go there and learn a lot rose my skill level a little.
- Adams, who stole the show with his humor and charisma, on the role he expects to play in the NBA:
I don’t know, just maybe they might throw me in the D-League or might keep me on the bench to be a good supporter, teammate. I don’t mind doing that. That’s pretty cool.
- Adams on how little American’s know about New Zealand:
It’s just funny talking to people about it and they just say, ‘Oh yeah, you Europeans are good’. Okay? And then they say, ‘Oh, is that near New York?’ I was like, “Are you serious?” I actually talked to someone like that. I just walked away. I just walked away.”
- Georgetown’s Otto Porter talks about how he can adjust to playing more off the ball in the NBA:
That’s something that’s in my game, too. I can move and cut without the ball. I don’t need to have the ball all the time. And I feel like that’s something that’s a part of me and a part of my game.”
- Porter on how he would feel about potentially staying in Washington:
It would mean a lot. I’m very comfortable there. I went to school in D.C. I love, D.C. It’s a great place to be; great people. And I wouldn’t mind staying.”
- Michigan’s Trey Burke on what it means to him that he has 50 family members bussing in from Columbus, OH:
You know without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Those people, they pushed me to become even better year after year. After all the hard work, seeing that it’s paying off, seeing that I still have those supporters coming all the way from Columbus to New York, it means the world to me, honestly.”
- Indiana’s Tyler Zeller on which one of his brothers (Tyler or Luke) he looks forward to matching up against most in the NBA:
Probably Tyler. He’s more my style. Luke’s just outside shooting threes so it will be fun playing Tyler. I think both of us have the scouting reports down pretty well.”
- Zeller on how he can adjust to taking more jumpers:
I’m very comfortable. I shot outside in high school and AAU. [Indiana] needed me to be inside just because we had so many shooters on the outside and not necessarily any big guy inside. So that’s what the college team needed me to do and I accepted my role.”
- Georgia’s Kentavious Caldwell-Pope on becoming more of a spot-up shooter in the NBA:
I’m pretty much comfortable with both [playing on and off the ball]. If I do have the ball in my hands, I can create my own shot, but most of the time, I’m comfortable coming off screens as just a catch-and-shoot guy.
- Caldwell-Pope on why he’s shot up the draft boards since he started individual workouts:
I just go hard. And also, in each workout, I shot the ball well at the 2-guard position. I know most of the teams that I worked out for were looking for a 2-guard that can score the ball and I really showed them that I can score the ball. Also, I can defend. Just going through the workout and showing them that just helped me improve.
- Syracuse’s Michael Carter-Williams on if he expected to be more of a scoring or pass-first point guard:
I think in high school, I had to do a lot of scoring for my team to win and as a competitor, I try to do anything for my team to win. But my natural position is a point guard and to facilitate and get other people involved. So I think that’s what I’ll be doing in the NBA.
- Carter-Williams on how he adjusts from playing in a 2-3 zone to playing in normal, NBA defenses:
I have a knack to pick up things quickly and learn fast and learn from my mistakes fast. I’m excited. I played man my whole life aside from those two years in college.”