A brief break in the Portland Trail Blazers’ exit interviews on Tuesday was followed by several different supporting players coming the mic. Maurice Harkless, Zach Collins, Rodney Hood and Anfernee Simons all stepped up to field questions. Here are some highlights:
Harkless on early-season injury struggles and recovery:
The first half of the season was pretty frustrating. Not being able to be out there, [not] feeling like myself for the first however many games it was. But once I was able to turn that corner, and feel pretty good about my knee and how I was feeling out there, I think I turned the season around a little bit for myself. And I think I finished on a pretty good note.
Collins on possibly being a starter next year:
Yeah absolutely. I think this playoff run, not only for myself but for the team, it was great experience. And now we’ve been there and we know what to expect. For me personally, going through that, and being able to play a big role and help our team win a lot of games [in the playoffs], I’ve already learned so much just in the last month of the playoffs. I think that’ll help me, and it’ll propel that transition into being a starter.
Hood on next season:
Nothing is definite right now. Obviously I’ve been on record many times saying how much I love it here and I want to be back, but we’ll see how that works out in the summer. Right now I just want to appreciate the season, everything we overcame and how this season went. And then later on down the line I’ll figure everything else out.
Simons on what the team told him to focus on in their exit interview:
Just get better. Learn a lot, and make sure you’re taking everything seriously, especially through Summer League. They emphasized that that’s going to be big for me this year.
You can watch their full interviews here: