The Utah Jazz Monday signed center Omer Yurtseven to a two-year deal last Monday. He’s meant to add some depth at that position for the team next season.
Yurtseven addressed the media after signing his contract and said he is “looking forward to what I’ll be able to learn and grow more into” with the Jazz. He also addressed his time with the Miami Heat, his potential role with Utah, his off-court life and what he learned from his injury last year.
Takeaways from playing with the Heat
“I think it was more so the attention to detail that I took away. Overall, the competitive side was really helpful. And they had a really competitive environment, which allowed competitive players to thrive. I really appreciated that and kind of took that with me in terms of applying that to everything — in every drill, every day, every game.
Conversations about his role
“Not yet. I literally signed [on Monday]. But I met with coach Hardy and talked with Danny Ainge as well. We haven’t talked, but we have some time during the summer. We’ll stay in contact and kind of go from there where I’ll be able to understand exactly what they want from me and execute.”
What he’s like off the court
“I went to Georgetown for two years and before that I was at [North Carolina] state. I graduated from Georgetown with a psychology degree. I played for Miami for the past two years. Off the court, I like to, obviously, watch the game, learn the game. But I don’t really do too much, I guess, active activities, let’s say. My focus is mainly on recovery. So whether it’s watching something, playing a game or reading something, or hanging out with friends. I usually spend a lot of time with family, so that would be my downtime — whether it be my mom and dad, my nieces or my brothers, and just spend some time with them.”
Dealing with injury last season
“It was rough. I think the toughest part was that it was my first kind of big injury. With that, I think I learned a lot. I upped the intensity with everything that I did. I used to train twice a day and I bumped it up to three. Now it was about staying consistent and disciplined and being active and proactive through it all. Whether it be morning, noon, night, I just wanted to do something for recovery and use all the tools to my advantage and speed up that process. And I think that process taught me how I can be a lot more diligent about recovery. Before, it was more so about, hey, work harder, work harder. I think once you accomplish that to its fullest extent, the next biggest thing becomes recovery. I’ve learned that throughout this process. It was rough, but it was all about putting one foot in front of the other and progressing through it.”