Dime: What have you, Paul and Kevin been up to this offseason? Have you been working out at all together?
JT: Well it’s amazing, you would think that guys who are in the stage of their career that we’re at — 15 years for myself, 16 years for Paul, 19 for Kevin — you would think that we would just show up at training camp and then kind of figure it out. But this year, we’ve already been in L.A. with the entire team training for a week. Now myself and Paul, we’re back in Brooklyn now, early September, you know gettin’ it in, putting in that hard work that’s going to be needed when the season comes. So the chemistry is going to be amazing. That’s going to be a special book that we put together because we’re already bonding now.
Dime: I know it still sounds funny, but how excited are you to play for your former backcourt mate in J-Kidd this season?
JT: It’s going to be amazing, on and off the court. You know we’re avid golfers so we’ll definitely be hitting the links. But Jason, he and I’s relationship is very special. It’s dear. We’re friends. We won a championship together but we had time to bond with one another and he’s one of my idols. He’s the greatest point guard in my eyes that’s ever played the game and I can’t imagine what he’s going to do as a head coach because he’s been coaching all his life.
Dime: Do you think there will be any adjustment period for the rest of the guys, especially the veterans to get used to him on the sideline?
JT: And people always ask that question but every year you step on the court in the NBA is an adjustment period. You know, guys move in and out, you got new teammates, maybe sometimes a new coach. I don’t see this (as) any different. Every year is a new journey and this is just another new journey. They brought a special group of guys together and we all know what the goal is, and we’re here to fight for it, until they carry us off.
Dime: Speaking of this upcoming season, you recently said that you guys have “the formula” to knock off the 2013 NBA champions, the Miami Heat. But there’s also another team in New York with championship aspirations after J.R. Smith recently guaranteed that the Knicks would be crowned in 2014. Talk about the hype going into this new found rivalry.
JT: They would win what? What did he guarantee? They would win what? I didn’t hear that.
Dime: The championship.
JT: They would win the championship?
Dime: Yeah, he said 100 percent guarantee.
JT: The NBA championship?
JT: Right. Maybe the Rucker Park Championship. I don’t know, not the NBA championship. I don’t see how they could guarantee that, at all. I’m not buying it, so… I mean, it’s a bitter rivalry, you know it’s going to be intense, and however they feel over there in that locker room they are guaranteed and entitled to feel that way but we don’t want to see that happen on our watch.
Dime: I love it man.
Dime: Last question that I have to ask since you’re known for your confidence and swagger on and off the court. Do you have any predictions for this upcoming season?
JT: Nah, only thing I can predict is that we’re going to go out every night and do all that we can, as a team, as a unit, as a (borough) of Brooklyn to go out and fight for that championship because that’s all of our goals. And we’re going to do whatever we can within our power to go after it.
Which team in New York will be better this year?
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