End of Season Availability: Brett Brown and Bryan Colangelo

45 minutes of Brett Brown.

46 minutes of Bryan Colangelo.

Holy cannoli, we’ve got quotes for days after an immersive and comprehensive end of season availability.

I figured the best way to do this would be to just pick out the most relevant quotes and do the snippets for easy reference moving forward. It would take me about 400 hours to transcribe everything verbatim, so let’s truncate the best parts for smooth reading.

There’s a lot to “parse,” which has become one of my favorite crutch words in 2018.

Brett Brown

On Ben Simmons’ jump shot:

  • each player received a document RE: this is what goes on with summer development, from a skill package perspective, strength and conditioning component, and what preseason looks like… 4 sheets for a detailed roadmap for each player
  • for Ben, it’s very much a part of conversation, his offensive future involves free throw line, efficiency finishing, and jump shot, maybe you talk about a three-point shot at some point
  • evolution of jump shot – he understands his world will become easier when that becomes part of his game

On his future and a contract extension:

  • has spoken briefly with Bryan Colangelo about a contract extension, loves being in Philadelphia, “we’ve grown something, collectively as an organization so proud of where we are.”

Looking back on Boston series:

  • do I wish I had played T.J. more earlier? probably. do I wish I had used Justin Anderson more? maybe. could Markelle have played a role? maybe, but when you coach a team to 52 wins, 16 game win streak, beat Miami 4-1, I’m happy to “go down” with the people who got us there

On the criticism of his coaching:

  • “I have heard it. I think the things that come up are, at times, wildly unfair. It’s part of our landscape, and we can go specifics if you want, but I get it. I’m the son of a coach, I get it. I am my harshest critic. I’m fine on my personal judgment day. I sleep at night. I sleep just fine at night. What we did and what we’re going to do makes me say that with confidence. The disappointment inspires emotion from passionate people and there’s nothing wrong with that. I understand but don’t pay attention enough for it to keep you up at night.”

Simmons’ shot part two:

  • We have a shooting coach in our program, but actually looking at other shooting coach possibilities to include in our staff design. John Townsend is a valuable asset, Ben will be spending intense time with him.
  • As far as completely rebuilding Simmons’ shot, no. “Intense refinement,” but not a complete blow up.
  • It’s an “easy sell” for Ben to fix shot this summer, to focus in on free throws, jump shot, and finishing efficiency
  • Ben “wants to be great,” as a team “we were exceptional in the final third of year, he was a rebound away from averaging a triple-double.” Had we played him a bit more he would have reached that easily. Celtics experience helps him with real-time learning.

On being “owed” something because he coached a bunch of terrible teams during the “Process” years:

  • It isn’t being owed. “I don’t feel like I’m owed anything. I feel like I deserve a lot but that I’m not owed anything.” Five years ago we talked about pace, space, and pass offense, but program also has to reflect the city and we have to play defense. We play with pace, space, and we pass the ball. Defense, we were third in the NBA this year. We finished 3rd in the east and most of us were just doing cartwheels at the thought of making the playoffs. “Our culture is not to be denied.”

On Markelle Fultz:

  • huge conversation, to shrink it – want him getting back his mojo and playing basketball in a high level, energized environment
  • had a long chat Thursday, we know what he had to endure this year, can’t wait to coach him again, we’ve seen signs of brilliance with what he’s done this year, think he’ll have a great summer

On Joel Embiid’s summer:

  • first summer that he has come back and will be healthy
  • fact that we played that volume of games, we all would have been happy with that in preseason
  • strongly believes Joel’s future is his body, mastery of diet, rehab/prehab, and strength and conditioning
  • deserves so much more credit than what he receives, coming out of an operation and wearing a mask with a lens and “trying to figure out playoff basketball,” commitment and navigating through setbacks is historic throughout his early career
  • health will bring post game to a new level, ability to turn and face, back down, pass out, that world he has to own
  • feels like Embiid is becoming a leader in the locker room

On growing the roster “organically” vs. adding a superstar free agent, the dichotomy in the fan base of how to proceed:

  • starting with fans, they have showed a consistent resilience, conflicted at times, but my feel is that there’s been an acceptance of growing it organically, “we all live with the pain of what we went through.”
  • if that portion of fan base is still prepared to take that notion and think it equals a championship, it’s “noble, but I don’t agree with it.”
  • another high level free agent is required and we have the ability to attract one
  • when the time is right, “we need help” to win a championship

Does Ben need to bring his elbow down when shooting? 

  • yes
  • also feet are important with his shot
  • free throw – he was a 77% FT shooter at LSU, dipped this year and then went back up in playoffs
  • want him to get to the free throw line more next year

Clarification on Markelle’s injury situation and what he was going through:

  • it is so documented, but I’ll answer the question again
  • he hurt his shoulder, it affected portions of his psyche, I get it, he was injured, then he didn’t play much basketball, brought him back and resurrected some stuff and I “thought he did quite well.”
  • felt fine with decision not to use him in playoffs, 19 year old with 19 games under his belt
  • feels like Markelle is doing fine now, spirit and motor is back
  • confident that he will have a great summer

On report that Boston committed a foul and traveling violation in final moments of game five:

  • respects the league for doing report and admitting it, owning it
  • you would love to have it back, 2 free throws for Embiid or Marcus Smart travels and you have time to get a shot up
  • “that’s the fragility of many things, here it’s the playoffs”

What is the makeup of a high level free agent? Shooter? Floor spreader? 

  • for the first time since I’ve been here, there’s tremendous clarity on roster, no mystery of Ben Simmons skill package or what Embiid has
  • what complements that? drape those qualities over the free agent market and say, “yep, that fits him.” we’ll make our own assessments but I’m not here to name names

Follow-up effort about the free agent question, specifically about Ben not playing with another ball-dominant perimeter player (LEBRON JAMES):

  • “if this player you’re describing was great, we’d figure it out, truly. we’d figure stuff out. it’s as honest and simple as I can answer that.”

Bryan Colangelo

Opening statement:

  • had a great year, lot of things were accomplished, but we’ve got so much more to do
  • coaches and players did a tremendous job and deserve a lot of credit
  • we’ve got flexibility built into our plan, ability to improve this team this year, but if we decide to defer, we could wait until 2019 free agency, have optionality with both years and been diligent protecting that, if we feel like there’s a deal to improve our team then we’ll more forward, want “sustainable winning”

On adding a high-level free agent: 

  • would agree that team needs to add something to get better, but great young core that continues to improve, Celtics series was worst you’ll see them play
  • i’ll say “talent, not free agent,” talent comes in many forms whether its trade, etc, we have cap room to explore any and all options
  • but to say this group can do it now, they obviously proved that they cannot, adding more talent or another piece is something we’re striving for
  • have about $25m in cap flexibility right now if they go for a free agent now, “does require some sacrifice,” will know more after draft lottery to find out where draft slots are
  • in order to use full cap flex, will have to “renounce” JJ, Ersan, Marco, and/or Amir. those four were a “big chunk of our production” at the end of the season, replacing that is difficult, would love to have all for back, but picture is not likely

Markelle Fultz playing in the summer league:

  • been aware of this topic, season just ended a few days ago and need to finalize a summer plan for him. Thursday meetings were more of a surface level discussion, exploring “various other hires” for basketball program and organization, may or may not factor into his development
  • summer league is “on the table” but need to discuss more with him and his agent and reps and everyone else

On Markelle working with his own people in the summer and keeping tabs on him when he’s not with the team: 

  • people train with various people, our coaches have done a great job, he’s come a long way, I’ve often said he’s not completely there yet, with respect to his offseason and where he trains, we’re still working out those details, our coaches, for the most part, will always be present
  • guys like to go to gyms and have a friend or former trainer rebound for them, we’re okay with that as long as it fits our plan for developing his game

On Brett Brown’s contract and how he did as a coach this year:

  • Spoken with Brett on a few occasions to let him know that it’s the intention to sit down and discuss a contract extension for him. Don’t think it’s healthy for a coach to go into a season with one year on their contract.
  • “Hopeful” to sit down and discuss his situation. “He realizes how much we value him as the coach of this program.
  • Brett does have what it takes to coach this basketball team, everybody asked if I’d give him the opportunity to coach – absolutely, he deserved the opportunity to coach better talent and finish the job, he’s going “a very good job, which is why we will be talking about a contract extension at the appropriate time.”

On T.J. McConnell:

  • his option will be exercised

 

On Jonah Bolden:

  • has an NBA out clause in his contract, is able to leave Maccabi and join the Sixers

 

On Furkan Korkmaz and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot:

  • injuries set both players back, but they aren’t being forgotten from a development standpoint
  • both will likely play for their countries during international qualification this summer
  • Korkmaz added 20 pounds to his frame, but not all good pounds, still thinks he’s a young and bright talent, more likely to play summer league than TLC

On the Boston series:

  • this series with Boston was a bit of a wake up call, adjustments were made, it “exposed us to some degree, individual and team weaknesses” and we all have to learn from that.
  • no issues selecting Fultz over Jayson Tatum, very complimentary of what Tatum did in the playoffs (what the fuck else is he supposed to say anyway?)

That’s about it for Colangelo. He was asked at least 7-9 questions about Markelle Fultz specifically, so I’ll go back in and dig those up for a story sometime next week. For now, here’s the video:

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6 Responses

  1. Thanks for the summary. Very helpful to read the quotes and info in a list like this.

    About Ben’s shot, were Brett and/or Bryan asked specifically about the possibility of him switching hands? I saw Ben was asked that himself, but was curious if anyone else was. Thanks.

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