Finishing off the Media Day Posts (You can find Part I here and Part II here) we have q+a’s from Ramon Sessions and Kevin Love’s general media sessions (no pun intended) at the Minnesota Timberwolves media day last week.
As a side note: I just want to make clear that these questions came from a number of the guys that were there including Randy Shaver, Jerry Zgoda, Wyn over at Canis Hoopus, Britt Robson, Ray Richardson, and a few others I didn’t meet or know. Just wanted to make sure you knew they weren’t all mine and gave credit where credit is due.
Moving right along then we have Ramon Sessions:
Q: Ramon you’ve played both backcourt positions in the past in this league, is there a preference for you and do you see yourself splitting duties about 50/50 this year? How are you prepared about it going into the season?
A: I just want to be on the floor so whatever position they want me to play I want to be out there. I’ve played point guard most of my whole life, last season you know I played the two a little bit, got kind of used to it a little bit, didn’t mind it at all.
Q: When they first approached you about signing the offer sheet what was the kind of role they described to you that you’d have with the team?
A: Basically like he said [in the first question], you know the 1 and the 2, try and throw me out there at both, would I be comfortable with it, and you know I said yes of course. I feel like it really don’t matter as long as you’re out there on the court playing with the guys, is all that matters.
Q: Now you’re about 6’3″, it’s tough, I mean a lot teams, a lot of 2′s are 6’7″, I mean you get a Dunleavy or whatever..
RS: The Joe Johnson’s, the Kobe’s, you’re right. I went up against them last year, and like you said a lot of bigger guys, but you know it works on both ends, you know they have to guard me too.
Q: …But is it something, what can you do in that circumstance? Do you play up on them and hope the guy behind you gets the blow-by?
A: Definitely the help defense comes in on that, but definitely get up on a guy and try and make something happen.
Q: And at the point obviously you see a guy like Jefferson and Love I mean there’s some pretty attractive options here.
A: Definitely, I mean those guys are gonna make my passes look a lot better than they are you know, those guys have great hands so I’m definitely looking to get those guys the ball in their sweet spots.
Q: How do you think your experience in the D-League will help this team really find it’s identity, really trying to grow a lot with maybe some of the guys getting frustrated early on?
A: My experience down there (for the Tulsa 66ers) was big for me and my career early on, but it’s like you said a young team and we are going to have some bumps in the road but I feel like we’ll be all right.
Q (One of my questions which you can see I wasn’t totally prepared for which you can see by the rambling at the end of it): Ramon one of the things that David Kahn said he liked best about you is your ability to get to the hole and get to the free throw line, that’s something this team hasn’t had for a long time, is that your number one goal out there or what are you thinking about when you get the ball on the wing or at the point?
A: You know coming off those pick-and-rolls definitely looking to penetrate and get guys shots and take what the defense gives me, you know they give me going to the rack, I’m gonna go to the rack or dish it off. But that’s definitely a strong part of my game getting to the rack, getting to the foul line.
Q: Other than the obvious thing, the years and the money, what appealed to you about this situation?
A: It’s a great up-and-coming team, it’s a young team and they’re looking to run and I feel like that’s one of the strong parts of my game, just getting up and down the floor. I’m definitely looking forward to it.
Q: Now you worked under a pretty stiff defensive guy in Skiles…
RS: Real stiff…
Q: … if you are going to develop a defensive culture on this team, I mean you guys are small in the back-court and to some extent small in the front-court, how do you compensate?
A: You just have to be ready to go, night in and night out, Coach Skiles is a great defensive coach and you know me and Luke Ridnour were out there plenty of times together and got the job done so I see the same thing with me and Jonny, you just gotta go out there and defend night in and night out and play hard.
Q: Will it be a dissapointment to you if you’re a 6th man, I mean does it matter in terms of your expectations and your role, not that anybody said you will be?
A: Definitely not, just being in this situation and being in the NBA is a dream come true for me and to put this jersey on night in and night out, no matter if I’m playing 40 minutes or 2 minutes, it’s a dream come true, so it don’t matter to me.
Next up Kevin Love:
Q: Lost weight? How many pounds?
KL: Um…[Sigh]… long puase…
Q: … give or take…
KL: …what’s the over/under?
Q: I’d say 7…
KL: 7… uh… maybe a little more, maybe a little less.
Q: Either way Al kicked your ass in that department.
KL: Yea he did. I mean he really, really kept the weight off which is a surprise to me, he obviously wasn’t going back home to Mississippi and getting that fried chicken that he loves.
Q: (my question) Do you think he missed out more on playing time or the fried chicken?
KL: Um… [sigh]…it’s just… I mean you guys got me stumped already on two questions.
Q: Everyone is talking team a lottoday but what are your individual goals for this year? What does success look like for you?
KL: I think a lot like last year, my success depends on the minutes that I play, I think if I play 5, 10 more minutes a game I can end up averaging a double-double. I think as far as the double-double’s go, you know I had 29 last year, I’m looking to up that by a considerable amount but you know just getting a lot better defensively for team defense and individual defense, throughout the whole summer I thought in my mind that if I’m going to play against guys like K.G. and Tim Duncan, my mindset’s got to be different going into games so that’s really what I was working on throughout the summer.
Q: Can you talk about the new coaching staff? What are your impressions of them?
KL: I really like them, I really like them, they seem to get along well, they’re pushing us in the little bit they got to work with us the past three or four weeks, I really like the way we’re headed. I think Laimbeer’s going to be great for me, also with Coach Rambis as well and Coach Wohl is a great guy to work with different moves on, and you know Coach Theus was a head coach and we got J.B. [Bickerstaff] back and you know J.B. was born to be a coach with his dad, so I think we got a great group of guys.
Q: Is your coaching staff tougher than your team?
KL: Ufff, I hope not. I hope not, I might have to knock Laimbeer’s teeth out one of these days…. or clothes line our man [Coach Rambis] over here, we’ll see.
Q: … Depends on the minutes…
KL: Yea, eactly, yea.
Overall it was an enjoyable day talking and listenting to the Wolves players and certainly gets me excited about the upcoming season!