2008 Offseason - Interview with Mitch Kupchak

Why did we choose not to match Golden State’s offer to Ronny Turiaf?

Mitch Kupchak: We didn't feel that based on our depth chart and the minutes that were available that the financial commitment was in line with how many minutes he would probably play. Another factor was Ronny didn't feel that his future was in Los Angeles. In other words, he looked at our depth chart and thought that he wouldn't play either. That's a factor. We could have matched him, but he indicated to us that he didn't feel his future was in Los Angeles. When you look at what you're compensating someone based on minutes played, we didn't think it was justified. So it was a combination of those 2 issues that led us not to match the offer.

Sasha Vujacic shootingWhere are we in discussions with Sasha?

MK: It's a continuing negotiation and we're hopeful that we could bring him back.

Does Ronny’s signing with GSW affect what we do with Sasha?

MK: No

You have said that Ronny wouldn’t have gotten enough playing time as those minutes would have been filled by Bynum. How is he doing on getting back on the court full time?

MK: I saw Andrew on Monday when he came in for a physical with our team doctor. He looked great. He's been cleared by his physical therapist in New York. My understanding is that he left on Wednesday to go to Atlanta to train for the rest of the summer.

Will you be attending the Olympics?

MK: No

What will you be looking for when you watch the games?

MK: Most of the players in the games are veterans that we know. Whether they have played in our country in the NBA so we obviously know who they are or they play in other countries and are the best players in those countries and have been in the NBA or in international competition before. So we're not learning anything really new about the players. If they were young developing players we might learn something we didn't already know. So really we're just watching the games as a fan and rooting for a particular team.

Pau Gasol and Kobe Bryant in national team jerseysDo you worry about Pau and/or Kobe not getting enough off-season rest given that we went to the finals and they are both focal points for their national teams?

MK: We do and that will be something we contemplate during training camp to give players who played during the summer some additional rest. That's something that has been discussed and we'll continue to discuss. But you really can't step in and indicate to a player that because we want you to be rested you can't represent your country. We wouldn't do that.