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Gary Trent Jr. Focused on Helping the Blazers Any Way He Can

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Trent discussed his internal development and more with Portland media on Tuesday.

2020 NBA Restart - All Access Practice Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images

Gary Trent Jr.’s rise during the 2019-20 season was one of the bright spots for the Portland Trail Blazers this year. The second-year player exploded especially in the second half of the season, racking up double-digit scoring nights and demonstrating his defensive intensity in increased minutes. Trent spoke with Portland media on Tuesday about his internal development and how the game has changed for him:

“I feel like I’ve got a pretty good rhythm right now. Coming in to Year 2/3, if you want to say in a sense with the little break we had, the game has slowed down completely for me. I know the offense better, I know where I can get my shots, where I can’t get my shots, how to set certain guys up to score that need to score at the certain right times. [I’m] really just growing, growing up, becoming a better player, listening to my coaches and trying to get better every day.”

When asked about the potential of him playing at small forward, Trent highlighted that he’s been a hybrid for the Blazers in practice and is focused on helping the team in any capacity:

“I’ve been almost in every spot. I’ve guarded fours in practice, I have brought the basketball up the floor to set guys up for plays, I’ve ran the wing as a two or a three. Being anywhere I can, being a hybrid, I don’t really want to be stuck in any position, so any way I can help this team — whether I’m one, four, defending — I’m here to do that.”

Trent also spoke about the impact of Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins returning, especially on the defensive side of the ball:

“I’ve been waiting for Zach to get back. He’s a great defender; I like to think of myself as a pretty good defender as well. So whenever you can have another defender out there that, if I get beat, I can trust that Nurk or Zach is going to have my back side. Man, the way they’ve been looking in practice, it should be scary. Nurkic is looking great. He’s shooting the ball well, he’s finishing around the rim, he’s defending. Zach is coming out strong, being aggressive.”

You can view Trent’s entire interview below: