Q&A: NBA Inside Stuff's Grant Hill
Q&A: NBA Inside Stuff's Grant Hill
Editor's Note: Wolves forward Kevin Love spent an afternoon with Grant Hill for a recent NBA Inside Stuff interview that aired over the weekend. After having lunch at Huberts and spending some time at the LifeTime Fitness Training Center talking rebounding and outlet passing with the Wolves' two-time All-Star, Hill spoke with Timberwolves.com's Mark Remme about Love's game and why he enjoyed the interview. CLICK HERE to check out the full NBA Inside Stuff segment.
Mark Remme: What did you guys talk about during your lunch?
Grant Hill: Wow, a chance to talk with Kevin. We talked about a number of things. I wanted to get his take on obviously rebounding, he said Flip Saunders had challenged him this summer to become more of a complete player with the assists, the rebounding, the leadership, the team and certainly what they need to do to make the playoffs. Really just getting to know him a little bit better. I wanted to know a little bit more about him, because I’m a fan of his, but we also hoped the fans wanted to know as well. It was good. Other than bumping into him on the court, I had never really talked with Kevin. But he’s a great guy, a great talent, and I think he’s one of the bright young faces—All-Stars—in our league. So he showed me a thing or two on the court. I wish I had known that 3-4 years ago when I played against him. At least I know it now.
MR: You played with and against great rebounders. What stands out to you about what he does under the boards?
GH: I played against some great ones, and I think the thing that sticks out is he’s a great rebounder but he’s also great at other things, too. A lot of times those other guys, at least the ones I played against the last 20 years, tend to focus or specialize only on rebounding. The fact that he’s a great offensive player, he’s a great passer, he’s an All-Star who also happens to be the best rebounder in the game is really special. And so to hear his insights and how he approaches it. I think part of it is technique, but it’s instinct. He’s been doing it his whole life, and there are certain things about his knack for the ball, I think a lot of it’s a feel. It’s probably hard to explain, but he’s the best at it. And time and time again he just gets rebound after rebound. He’s not the biggest, he’s not the strongest, he’s not the most athletic, but he’s got heart, he’s got an intellect and he’s got a great feel. Getting on the court, asking the best player in the NBA his thought process during rebounding was pretty neat.
MR: With him being challenged to facilitate, was it impressive to see him out there with his outlet passing?
GH: Yeah, his outlet passing—that’s an area where he’s really improved. Two years ago he didn’t really have that in his game. And maybe he didn’t have the personnel, he didn’t have the wings that got out there and flew up and down the court. But you can see, his versatility, he’s someone who does it all. And I think whatever he can’t do, you have confidence that he’ll work on and improve in that area. But his outlet passing, his little sixth sense he’s developed with Corey Brewer. It’s one of those plays that is demoralizing, you know? A team misses a basket, and the next thing you know, two seconds later, you’re trying to defend a layup on the other end. So like I said, Kevin is a great talent, great work ethic, great feel for the game. He just is a complete All-Star, and you know he’s one of those guys that you look forward to watching when he plays.
MR: How would you describe Kevin to the fans who haven’t had a chance to meet him?
GH: I think Kevin’s down to earth, I think he’s humble. I think he’s got a fun personality. I think he’d be a great teammate to play with. There’s no prima donna with Kevin. I think he’s what you see is what you get, and it’s refreshing, you know? A lot of times guys can be full of themselves and so forth and I think he doesn’t take himself too serious. But he enjoys what he does and that he’s a great teammate, he’s a great ambassador for the game. He’s just super down to earth.