Tony Battie Question and Answer

OrlandoMagic.com caught up with veteran center Tony Battie earlier this month. Check out what he had to say about his injury, his progress, and his teammate playing in the Olympics.

On how the time off affected him…
"It was tough, especially seeing the other guys out there playing. The guys put together a stellar season and it’s tough not being a part of it. I’m just looking forward to getting back; it gave me something to drive toward while working out, especially during the rehab period. I just wanted to hurry up and get back and help my team out.”

On injuries being a part of a long career…
"Injuries are a part of the game. The majority of the time they come at unforeseen moments. Everything happens for a reason, it could be a blessing in disguise. With the advancement of Dwight Howard, he had a stellar season this year. With me up against the clock as far as years left in the league, I just look at it as a resting period for me, keep some miles off my knees and I’m looking forward to working hard this year.”

On his comeback…
“From the surgery, I’ve been committed to rehab and working through that. Right now I’m just looking forward to playing some contact basketball and getting ready for training camp.”

On the aspect of his game he has been working on most…
“I’ve just been working on my body, period. The training staff and the coaching staff have been working with me as far as tailoring a program for me. My skills at this point won’t diminish, but working on my body is important. The small areas, knees, ankles, small muscles, the abdominal area, the things that keep you going, are important.”

On his impressions of rookie Courtney Lee…
“He’s got a bright future. He’s very coachable, he listens. Right now, he’s just a student of the game, he’s got a lot to learn in this league but I don’t think he will have a problem at all adjusting and doing what he needs to do to get where he needs to get. I see him playing at a high level in years to come. I think the coaching staff has been on him and he had a good summer league. It’s the start of something good for him. I think he’s going to be a great player for us.”

On watching teammate Dwight Howard in the Olympics…
“I’m always checking the stats to see how many minutes he played. I think the team definitely will bring home the gold medal, and Dwight will be a huge piece of that, especially in the middle. Just like he is a huge piece of this team, he will be a huge piece playing center for a gold-medal team. It will be an experience he will probably never forget.”