Etan Thomas Interview
Washington Wizards big man Etan Thomas and an InsideHoops.com reporter met up in Boston during the summer league and quickly discussed the arrival of new coach Eddie Jordan. This just before the news that Gilbert Arenas may be getting a multi-year Wizards contract.
InsideHoops.com: Talk about the status of the team, and the arrival of Eddie Jordan.
Etan Thomas: We're really excited to have a new coach. Coach Jordan is really great, and everything we've seen so far has been really positive. He's really a player's coach, he really uses a lot of positive reinforcement, and that's really important with younger players. And I think it's going to be great. I had a great time playing with Jordan, of course, I learned a lot from him. Now we're looking towards the future, it's a different time now, and everyone's just getting ready. I had an injury last year, things were going good for me and I had an injury, that's why I really wanted to play in the summer league, and I'm glad they said alright to it. So I'm using it just to really get back, kind of my first time playing since the injury.
InsideHoops.com: When was the injury, again?
Etan Thomas: February, late February. A New Jersey game. It's part of the game. You have injuries, and you bounce back.
InsideHoops.com: And as for playing with Michael Jordan, on the one hand he helped but on the other there was often lots of standing around watching him when he had the ball...
Etan Thomas: Well the makeup of the team was different. There were different players that played better with him in the system. But, it was a great learning experience. I mean, who can say they played with the greatest player ever. It was great.
InsideHoops.com: What did you know about Eddie Jordan before he came?
Etan Thomas: All I knew was what his reputation was, and his rep was all positive, and it was great. And then after meeting him and playing under him in this summer league, it confirmed all the rumors that I heard, that he was great.
InsideHoops.com: What is he best at?
Etan Thomas: One thing is being able to relate to the players on a level where, he pushes you without trying to degrade you. And that's a big thing, especially with younger players. Positive reinforcement. He can make you know that you did something wrong, and you feel that you have to get it better, but it's not like a degrading, dehumanizing situation, it's more uplifting, because you know he's on your side, and it's completely different.