Monday was a long day for the players. Not because they were asked to do an incredible amount of stuff, but because they were all suited up and couldn't play. After all, training camp didn't begin until Tuesday morning. This was just Media Day.
Everything was supposed to begin at about 1 o'clock on Monday, but a couple of guys perhaps showing early to get things started. I arrived at 10:30 and immediately saw Dante Cunningham cruising the hall. Then, I bumped into Brandon Roy, then Greg Oden, and I realized that this thing would be starting earlier than expected.
It shouldn't have surprised me. One trademark of this team, perhaps because of its youth and eagerness, has been punctuality. Four or five years ago if one of our flights was supposed to leave at 1 o'clock, the odds were very good that someone would straggle in at 1:15 or 1:20, and maybe we'd get off the ground by 1:30. Not with this group. If our flight says 1 o'clock now, we're usually wheels up by 12:50 or so. On time is now considered late. Part of that is Nate, but most of that is just the attitude of the guys we've got.
I'm not going to get carried away with media day stuff, because it's probably not that interesting. But, I've been coming to Blazer media days since 1992 (that's actually scary to think about), and I will say that things had a different feel this year.
The subject wasn't youth, or inexperience, or potential, or what's perhaps missing from this team. There was a quiet confidence. Not as much fun was had. I always feel the really young players are kind of entertained by media day, and normally there's a lot of ribbing, and some horseplay. There were certainly smiles on Monday, but everything had a more serious tone.
Because we had our Courtside show on Monday night, I was able to set up in one of the stations and interview most of the players in a one-on-one setting. We ran some of the interviews last night on the show, and here are the links to the interviews if you want to hear them. These guys are always good interviews, but I thought Brandon's was probably the best interview I've ever had with him. LaMarcus was very good, and I thought Joel, who's normally a little reserved, was also in fine form.
Click on the player's name to hear the interviews from yesterday.