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Aaron Falk and Steve Luhm cover the Utah Jazz and the NBA for The Salt Lake Tribune. The Tribune on Twitter - Aaron Falk: @tribjazz, Steve Luhm: @sluhm

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Interview — Jazz's Paul Millsap on contract extension, free agency, position battle, Utah's potential

Excerpts from an interview Monday with Jazz forward Paul Millsap, who appeared at the KUTV studios during a fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

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Millsap on his offseason: Took a little time off. Probably should've took a little bit more than what I intended on. Yeah, yeah, got that problem [being a workaholic]. Probably should've took a little bit more off. But it is what it is. With [Johnnie Bryant], we was ready to get back at it. But the Utah Jazz came and snatched him from under my wings. But now he's with us full time, so it works out.

Having his personal trainer join the Jazz: It works out, man. It works out. Pieces are falling — that's how I look at it. He's going to be around everyday. So any time I need to get exercise or any of the other guys need to get up extra shots, he's there for them.

Specific focus during offseason workouts: Just continued to work on my shot, continued to fine-tune my shot. Continue to work ballhandling, continue to work on off the dribble, dribble pull-ups, things like that. Basically continue to work on all facets of the game. You can't just really point out one thing. Just continue to get better at all the things.

Reflecting on his 2011-12 season. Was it his best all-around year in the NBA: Yeah, I agree with that. I don't like to look back. But I felt like it could've been better — I can always say it could've been better. Under the circumstances, our team made it to the playoffs. That was our main focus: If we can get our team to the playoffs, then all of our goals has been accomplished for that year. Especially being the year that it was; it was a tough year for us. But we accomplished something, we're going to try and build off that.

Has it started to sink in he'll likely be a free agent this summer: Not at all, not at all. It'll sink in when it happens. But right now, I'm still with the Utah Jazz. I'm still going to go out there and play basketball for them and give it everything I got.

How he'll handle the situation if the Jazz end up starting Derrick Favors at power forward this season: I know what I can do. I know my capabilities. Everybody else do, too. Just get out there, don't really think about it. Haven't really thought about it thus far, and it's helping me out. Just continue to get out there and just try to get better, that's my main focus. Get better and get ready for training camp, and whatever happens after that just happens.

Jazz offseason additions of Mo Williams, Randy Foye and Marvin Williams: We got lucky. We got a ton of a great talent, especially with the veteran guys we've got coming in. We've got a lot of veteran guys, but we've also got a young nucleus. It helps us out in both facets. With those guys coming, we added a lot of ballhandling; we added some shooting; and a lot of leadership. Those guys are going to bring a lot to the table.

Deepest Jazz team he's been on: On paper, yeah, it is. We haven't gotten into the season yet, so we really don't know how deep it is. On paper, it looks great. We've got, from 1-13, we've got guys who can get out there and really play with anybody.

Eager for the new season: Man, this year's going to be great for the NBA, for basketball, period. There's a lot of things happening. For me, I've just got to stay — keep my ego down a little bit. I learned over the past not to get too excited. Just go into the season ready to play and you've got to see what happens. It's going to be a good year for us.

Brian T. Smith

Twitter: @tribjazz



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