More media day: Ted Leonsis and a Ferrari analogy | The rookies sung karaoke last night | Jan Vesely's shooting coach | Andray Blatche talks defense | Andray Blatche and strong words. | Trevor Booker's Israeli experience.
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Some other random quotes from Wizards media day that caught my eye (or ear, as it were). I'm swamped too much for a comprehensive link dump, but all the usual suspects have the entire day covered really well beyond the stuff we've done.
Andray Blatche on this season: "Flip told me before the lockout started that next season was going to be the hardest season of your career, because it's going to be short and we're going to be really, really big on defense."
John Wall on how to balance improving his jump shot with playing to his strengths: "It's easy. When people go under screens, I know what to read. I know when to take my chances to drive. I know when to shoot the ball. Last year, I was hesitating if I was open. Now, I know I'm going to shoot if I'm open, and even if I miss it, I have the same confidence in my next shot that I'll make it."
Flip Saunders on Sam Cassell: "I have to talk to Sam a lot. They play totally different than him. Sam played at 10 miles an hour. They played at 75. Some of the things that he did, they don't have the ability to do. But what we try to [tell them] is, Sam played a lot because of his smarts and intelligence and those things. He's trying to give some of the players that."
JaVale McGee on comparisons to Tyson Chandler: "I don't see any similarities ... it's who I am. I play like myself."
Roger Mason on the Chris Paul trade: "I talked to Chris today on BBM. His avatar is the Clippers, so I guess he's happy with that."
Wall on Andray Blatche: "He came in with a great mindset throughout this year. He's really trying to get in shape. He's really trying to run hard in every drill. He's passing the ball a lot better and being a better teammate. It's really helped all of us with not being selfish. All of us are doing our roles. The way he played during training camp will really help us if he plays that way throughout the season."
Roger Mason on seizing a fanbase like the Capitals: "The biggest thing, with the way the economy has been, is I think the city wants to see a team that's giving it their all. Obviously, you want the results to be there. The Capitals have been doing that the last three years. I'll tell you: we've got a hard hat thing now, and with this group, if we play hard every day, I think we'll get the fans.
Wall on Flip Saunders calling him a popcorn player: "I don't understand that one." (laughs). "If you love the game, then every time you step on the court, your adrenaline should already be pumping. You should be ready to play every game," he said. "You should be thankful because you never know when your last game could be. So I just enjoy it and take all the fun into every game I play."
Rashard Lewis on the possibility of being released: "Of course, you read the blogs, the papers and see all about the amnesty clause. But when the Wizards came out and told me they were going to keep me, it was good for me mentally to know what team I was coming to and to prepare myself to coming to play for the Washington Wizards instead of not knowing where I would be. It's hard to prepare yourself for a season when you don't know exactly where you'd be."
Wall on smaller goals the Wizards need to improve: "Learn how to close out quarters. That's one of the main things. We'll be up in a quarter, and the last 3-4 minutes, we give up the lead. We need to learn how to close out quarters."
Flip Saunders, with possibly the most alarming quote of the day: "The only thing we haven't had a chance to work on a lot is our pick and roll defense, which for Philadelpha, who we play tomorrow, is something they really thrive on."