This afternoon the 76ers and new coach Eddie Jordan held a Q&A about this upcoming season. The Q&A was followed by an on-court demonstration of Jordan's version of the Princeton Offense. Below are most of the quotes from Jordan as well as a quick-hit video of Jordan during the session. A couple of quotes not to be missed: 1.) Jordan questions the willingness on the defensive end of last season's starting point guard, Andre Miller. 2.) Jordan is asked if he had any interest in bringing back Allen Iverson.
Jordan on Elton Brand's health:
"No hiccups, no problems. He’s playing at a high level during pick-up games, he’s taken a pounding … he’s kept the pace. And our players have made sure he gets a lot of opportunities to score."
"It’s going to take a while for him to really get his game legs, his season legs under him. I say a while, but he might surprise us and be ahead of the curve and really play at a high level in November."
"I think his talent level is there. I want him to play on a team that’s better than the team he played for when he scored 20 points and got 10 rebounds. If he scores 17 points and gets 9 rebounds and we win a lot of games and go deep in the playoffs and win a championship I think he’ll say, ‘I’m back to form.’"
On Lou Williams at the point:
"We want Lou to be Lou, first of all. He’s an open-court player and that’s what we want to do first, get out in the open court and get to the basket ..."
"I think Lou is more athletic and a lot more determined defensively than the point guard they had here starting before."
“Attack, fast, quick point guard that gets to the rim … we’re going to give him all the opportunity in the world to be a 38-minute a night player and, you know what, in the NBA that means a lot.”
On Andre Iguodala at shooting guard or small forward:
"We sort of are penciling in lineups and starters and rotation guys, and, it’s sort of what coaches do, we play around with lineups and Andre has been a guard in a lot of our different ‘mock’ lineups."
"Andre, Thaddeus, and Elton, they are pretty much, when we say we pencil in different lineups, they always seem to be in every lineup."
"Most of the time Andre has a terrific routine he follows and even a coach with sacred ideas as myself do not disturb a player’s routines in the summer. He has his routine and he’s developed a better jump shot and he has a lot of confidence in what he can do with the ball."
On (not so surprisingly) defense coming before offense:
"First priority will be to defend, I know we’ve had a lot of talk about the offense."
On Samuel Dalembert:
"He’s going to be our center and he’s going to be taught our offense from the center position whether it's high post or low post. I like the fact that Samuel can make shots around the elbow, top of the key, free-throw line. That puts a lot of pressure on the defense. Now, he has to be a willing passer and we’ll see if he’s a willing passer. And we’ll try to make him understand the more he passes the easier it is for him to score … if he believes and trusts in what we believe in, he’ll make his teammates better and make himself better."
“I’m fresh, I’m new … I want to get to know him myself, him and I … I know there have been ups and downs with his play and this is a fresh start.”
On how this offense will work:
"We have to see. We have to see what’s available on the floor. It’s a read-and-deliver sort of offense and we try to train our players, ‘What do you see when you have the ball? What do you see when you don’t have the ball?’ There’s a reaction to an action."
And on how long it will take to implement:
“Late in the season, and that’s when you want them to play at their best. Nah, I don’t think it will be too late. Again, there’s another side of the ball. I tell our players every day, ‘Look, I don’t want to be in the offense, I want to get stops and get open-floor opportunities.’”
“There’s going to be growing pains with any system you put in.”
On last season's effectiveness:
“When we watched film there was random basketball. Sometimes this happened and sometimes that happened and there was no reason. But there are reasons and there’s a method to what we’re doing on both sides of the ball.”
On Dionte Christmas:
“He’s going to have a real, legitimate shot at making our team.”
On Jason Smith:
“He’s had a terrific rehab … he’s played 5-on-5 very effectively at a high level, a lot of physical contact … the timetable was just right for him, I think he’s at a 100 percent.”
On this team's competitiveness:
“These players defend in pick-up games, they compete, they knock people down in the paint and it gets my engines going that I wanted to start camp three weeks ago, this team has that ‘omph’ that you need to be competitive.”
On being under the radar:
“I don’t really care what they say, they can say we’re the next champions, or 30th in the league, that doesn’t motivate us. That doesn’t really motivate me.”
On the gap between the Sixers and upper-echelon Eastern Conference teams?
“It remains to be seen. Depends on health, obviously, depends on how well, efficiently, we can put both our systems on the floor and execute our systems and, mostly, defensively.”
Did you have any interest, personally, in bringing back Allen Iverson to the Sixers?