Randy Wittman addressed the media before the Wizards face the Jazz. He’s ready to push a few buttons.
What is the latest on Nene?
The same. We didn’t do anything but shootaround today. He practiced a little bit with us yesterday, some dummy stuff and got on the floor, ran through plays and things of that nature.
What’s your starting lineup for tonight?
I ain’t telling you. You’ll see when we jump it up.
It is safe to assume it’s different?
You’re catching on.
How much do you expect to use Shaun [Livingston] tonight?
I’m going to throw him in. We’re going to keep it simple with him. There’s some things when he was here his first trip through here that we still have in our system that we’re using that he’s familiar with. Obviously he’s only been here two days and so we’re going to throw his out there. I think he can help us. He gives us size at that position, I think the knowledge of playing and knowing how to play is important to that group.
What else did you like about him enough to bring him back?
If you say what’s his one great attribute, you can name a lot of different things. It’s not he’s a shooter, he’s a playmaker, he does a little bit of everything. He can make the mid range shot, he can post up, create shots out of the post up. He does a lot of different things that we didn’t have. With John out, again it gives us size at that position.
He will always be linked to that devastating knee injury that he had. What does it say about him still playing at a high level?
Well, that he’s persevered. It’s a credit to him. A lot of people might have given up. He went through a number of years, not just a couple, a number of years fighting through that just to get himself to where he could play at this level again, and a testament to his fortitude in not giving up. It’s paying off for him.
What does Utah’s length do?
It’s a big challenge. They’re probably one of the biggest team’s we’ll face this year, them and Memphis. Size is their strength. That’s going to be our number one focus, the paint area, posy ups, rebounding. We’re going to have to do a god job of controlling that to have a change.
Is it more important that Livingston know the system or the players?
Starting off, the system. It always helps to know the players, too. I’m not going to discredit that. The system, obviously when you’r first starting out in a situation like he is, walking in with no practice, really. Then you learn your players. Hopefully he’ll have a comfort level with that.
Utah has a losing record. Does that make getting off to a good start even more important?
It doesn’t matter what Utah’s record is, it’s important for us to not did ourselves holes. We’ve seen that over a course of the season where we’ve dug holes and fallen back and lot at the end. Obviously you want to get off to good starts. That’s going to be imperative for us. Not only for the sake of having a better chance to win, but for your psyche as well.
Is it safe to say that’s your motivation for why you’re switching up the lineup?
As a coach, you guys know me well enough to know I’m not one to stand and not try to push different buttons, whether that’s a lineup change or how many minuets a guy gets. I just felt it was maybe time for a change.