1on1: Steve Blake
Q: It’s still early in training camp, but Mike D’Antoni has liked some of the things on the floor. What have you seen in camp that’s carried over to the games, and what would you like to see get better these next two weeks?:
Blake: I think we’ve done a pretty good job of our defensive principles of being on the same page. Our communication can be a little bitbetter once we get fatigued, which will come. Offensively, I like how we’re playing as team. We’re getting buckets together; we’re not just relying on our one-on-one talents. With time, that chemistry will continue to get better.
Q: Steve Nash seems to be moving well, at least compared to last season with all the injuries, and you and Jordan Hill havebeen able to come off the bench or start and find ways to contribute. How do you think it’ll carry over to the regular season, with you three on the court and finding a way to be impactful?:
Blake: It’s nice for coach to have those options, to have multiple point guards at the same time, or if we use our different strengths in different games. It’s nice to have those options for him.
Q: With Nash in particular, how do you see him moving on the floor compared to last year?:
Blake: He looks really good to me. He says he feels healthy, and I’m sure he feels he can do more. He’ll continue to get better as we go. Yesterday was his first game in a long time, so obviously if he gives us what we know he can do, he’s really going to take us to the next level.
Q: Last year was a crazy year with no training camp, a coaching change, a system change. How much of a whole do you have on what Mike D’Antoni is inputting offensively and how do you think that’s filtering out to the rest of the team?:
Blake: I have a pretty good grasp for it. Once you get into a game, things quicken up a little bit. That’s where preseason is good. You can take a couple games to acclimate yourself to the system in game-type conditions against different types of defenses, so I have a little bit of a learning curve, but for the most part, I feel great.
Q: You play Denver again tomorrow night. Is it at that point in the preseason where it doesn’t matter too much what the other team is doing? Rather, it’s more important what you guys are just working on?:
Blake: We definitely want to win. We also have to take these opportunities to start game planning and understanding how that’s going to work for us. Obviously we want to continue to work on our stuff and make those things amazing and 100 percent on point, but we also have to take into account other teams and how they’re defending our pick and rolls, and what their strengths are, what they’re trying to do and we have to learn how to take those things away as a team.