Q&A: Paul Millsap

Posted by C.L. Anthony on Friday, May 09, 2014 with No comments
Courtesy of Chris Vivlamore 

Q. You said after Game 7 that while many believe this team overachieved, you believe it underachieved. After some reflection, do you still feel that way?
A. I knew you were going to bring that up. I do, man. Looking over the season, the things that we’ve been through, the struggles we had to live with, it was definitely a great season for us. We were able to accomplish a lot, as far as style of play and the way we want to play. But I’m always going to look ahead and say we could have done this, we could have done that.
Q. What are your summer plans?
A. Right now, take a little time off to relax my body, definitely relax my mind. And then get back going. My thing over the years is to continue to get better. I know I have some things I have to get better at, I want to get better at. It’s going to be a long summer but I’m up for the challenge.
Q. What is that one main thing you want to work on?
A. For myself, overall I just want to be a better player. I didn’t make every shot. I had almost two and a half turnovers (a game). I didn’t make all my free throws. So there is definitely room for improvement.
Q. How do you assess coach (Mike Budenholzer’s) first season and what you were able to accomplish?
A. As a first-year coach, I think he did a great job for us. His confidence was there. He stuck to what he believed. There is nothing more you can ask of a coach, especially a rookie coach to do but to respect himself and respect what he is capable of doing. We stood behind him. He rallied us. He’s been a great leader for us. The sky is the limit for him.
Q. What was it like for you after Al Horford went down?
A. It happened so fast it didn’t give me time to think about it. That was one of the good things about it. But Al is a big part of what we have going on. To have him out for most of the season, it was saddening for us. We found a way. That speaks a lot to this team and how we carry ourselves.
Q. What do you think this team needs to move forward?
A. Nothing really stands out because we showed glimpses of things this year. If we can be consistent with that, speaking as a team, things will be a lot better.
Q. Did you surprise yourself maybe without how well you played and getting national attention for what you did?
A. I wouldn’t say I surprised myself. There were a lot of things I knew I could do. It was just getting out there and doing it. I felt like I was confident in doing that. It was definitely on a bigger stage.  For me, being one of the leaders on this team, I know there are things I have to get better at. It wasn’t a perfect season for myself or where I wanted to be but it was still overall a great season.
Q. Learning how to finish (games is an area for improvement). Do you feel that you moved in that direction, especially with some of the young players?
A. I’m sure it is. You have to look down the line. A lot of guys hadn’t been put in these situations, even the head coach, of a Game 7, Game 6. Myself, trying to carry this team and help this team, hadn’t been put in that situation. We felt like we got a lot of experience for this year to carry into next year.