Alex Abrines will start his third season with the Oklahoma City Thunder. He answered questions from the media about the coming season, addition of Dennis Schroder and what it feels to be one of the longest-serving members on the current roster.
Q: What do you expect from 2018-19 season? Is there any aspect of your game that you’ve been working on the most during the last few weeks?
A: “I think the team didn’t end last season as we planned, but for me especially I’d say that I showed myself that I could be a great defender, so that’s one of my focuses for this year. Just being more consistent and just keep growing as a good defender, also, not forgetting that I am also a threat from a three-point offensive standpoint.”
Q: Do you think this year will be your best NBA season to date?
A: “I just try and take it day-by-day. We know as shooters we have some better days than others, and of course when I’m mad because I didn’t score shots, the next day I’ll take care and shoot a little bit more after practice. But you know how it goes, like sometimes there’s that thing that you can’t score and you can do nothing about it. Just get ready for the next game and try to do it better.”
Q: How has the addition of Dennis Schroder helped Oklahoma City?
A: “He’s a great player. I think he’s the partner we need. He can score in so many ways. He’s so crafty. He can do our second unit much better by pushing the ball and just keeping moving the ball like we did most part of last year. And special for me, I’m sure I’ll just be wide open. Same as Russ [Westbrook], that opens a lot of space so he can drive, and then he can either finish or just pass the ball to the three-point line.”
Q: You’re entering your third year in Oklahoma City. Do you feel like a veteran yet?
A: “It’s crazy because I feel like I arrived here yesterday, but it’s my third year, and I’m the fourth longest serving guy at the Thunder. I think I can help the guys, especially the new ones, to let them know like how we work here, what are the standards for the Thunder organization, and of course help the team as much as I can. I’m getting better each year, and this year is another step forward.”
The 2018-19 NBA season tips off tonight on Sky Sports, the new home of the NBA in the UK with more than 170 live games throughout the season. Tune in to Sky Sports Arena from 1:00am to watch all the live action.