Cleveland — Excerpts from a media interview Monday with Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin after shootaround at Quicken Loans Arena.
Corbin on getting Raja Bell back against the Cavaliers: I'm also certain. … He looked pretty good [Sunday]. He's not feeling sore today. I'm pretty sure he'll be ready tonight.
If Bell can play, Jazz will start him: Yeah. We have to. … Coming off injury, he's been a starter. We'll start him and probably will bring Gordon off the bench and keep Josh in there and we'll make adjustments from there.
Thought process behind move: I like what we're getting from Josh with that starting group. The way he cut off when Al's posting up, he can read situations a little better; coming off down screens, it gives us another option there. And then Gordon, there's a way we can get the ball more in his hands with the second group and be able to run a few more things through him and also pick the tempo up for us a little bit. [Lately], we've gotten a little stagnant with that group, especially in the beginning.
Keeing shooters — Bell, Hayward — in each unit: It's a good mix. You need some perimeter shooting, especially with Al and Paul in that post. Teams are just really starting smash in on them and focus in on them and what they're doing in there, so they're actually starting to front us a lot more now, and rotate an opposite guy over and rotate a perimeter guy to Paul.
Veteran-heavy first unit: Absolutely. You're absolutely correct. Other than Jamaal, that's the most experience we have on this team, and they're all in the game at the same time. It should give us a chance, especially in the beginning of the game. These veteran guys know how to prepare themselves to play, going down the stretch here, getting ready for the playoffs, trying to finish and get in the playoffs. … Back-to-back nights, we may have to sub a little bit differently to kind of keep 'em fresher. But I'm excited about the opportunity.
Backcourt in second unit: It'll change some. We can play Gordon and Alec together. We can play Gordon and C.J. with Earl. It gives us a lot more versatility.
When he started considering change: Just before [Howard] got hurt. … When Al has the ball on the block, we have a tendency to stand and watch him. And then with Paul stepping in some and Josh being the veteran and being able to read when he can cut and how he can cut and not get in his way, but occupy a guy to free it up, to get a couple layups. … I thought the time is now. We get a little bit more experience with the starting group as we finish up.
Liking Bell and Howard together: Oh, yeah. They've veteran guys. They know how to cut. Raja can space the floor, hit shots. Al and Paul on the block, with Devin's speed now coming up the floor, I think it's a good mix of guys.
Change becoming permanent: … It may be a good way to finish up and give us a great chance. As long as we're able to get the production from both groups then we'll be in good shape.
Vets know how to win on road: How to set the tone, how to get us started. But the concern now is that I've got more young guys on the floor with the second group. [Laughs] So it's to give us a chance to get off early to a good start, but then to find a way to see how the young guys going — if not, to be able to bring one or two of the veteran guys back a little bit sooner, to be able to finish and not have the lulls that we've been having. When we can get a lead and maybe build on it a little bit more, instead of letting teams hang around.
Brian T. Smith
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