A couple of quotes I've noticed recently that I really like.
First, this one from a Phil Jasner piece today. The article was about Tony DiLeo saying Iguodala will be an All Star next season.
"The nights I don't score 20, I try and make sure we get that win," he said. "The nights I score 20 and we lose, I [ask] what I could have done differently. I don't try and put a major emphasis on [scoring]; I try and lead by example, to show guys there are things other than scoring.
"I try and be a guy who can do a lot of things on the court, and we're winning [so] why change anything? Why try to be a 30-point scorer? If we were losing, it would be a different situation."
That, my friends, is leadership. More importantly, that's the best player on your team emphasizing to the younger guys what it takes to win. One other quote came from Thaddeus Young during a post-game interview after the last game with NBA TV.
When they asked Thad about Marreese Speights' play in the Phoenix game, the first thing Thad said was, "We all get on him about his rebounding, but he was pretty good tonight."
For young teams to grow into championship contenders, they need to focus on the things veterans don't take for granted. Andre Miller is really the only veteran on the court with these guys on a nightly basis, and he doesn't strike me as a vocal, get-in-your-face, type of leader who's going to yell at a rookie when he doesn't box someone out. When you have guys like Thad, riding Speights, that tells me the team is trying to instill a culture of accountability. (I wish some of it would rub off on Thad some nights, as far as rebounding goes). That can't possibly be a bad thing.
Hollinger also has a brief piece on Speights in today's Daily Dime. Essentially, he's calling for more PT for Marreese. My personal feeling is that you keep making Speights' minutes contingent on his defensive and rebounding efforts. I don't want him to be a one-trick pony when he eventually cracks the starting lineup, I want him to be a complete player who is one of the foundations of this team. Stay the course, make him earn his minutes as a rookie, and the good habits he forms now will make him great down the road.