Mason Plumlee has that confidence ... and now that he's not a rookie, he's more willing to talk about his goals.
"Oh yeah," Plumlee replied this week when asked if he wanted to start. "What player doesn’t wanna start?"
That would mean power forward, a position that Kevin Garnett held down last year and Mirza Teletovic has to have his eye on as well. Plumlee has been playing a bit of center and power forward in the fast-moving Team USA offense and getting praise for it from his coaches, both on Team USA and the Nets.
He revealed that every day in Las Vegas, he saw the Nets coaching staff. Lionel Hollins took his staff to Vegas for a "retreat" and as a side benefit, they got to talk with Plumlee regularly.
"They were out [there], they watched every [USA] practice out in [Las] Vegas, the whole staff was out there," Mike Mazzeo quotes Plumlee as saying when asked if the coaching staff gave him a hint about where he fits in. "They’re on the job, so if I don’t know, I’ll know soon."
"But [Lionel Hollins is] a very positive coach. He gave me something after each practice to look at. And then the same with, I met Paul Westphal, Jay Humphries, [John] Welch was out there. It was cool for me because they were doing the… I don’t know what you’d call it, their little coach’s retreat or whatever. I got to talk with them all week."
So should he start. Bradford Doolittle of ESPN Insider argues that he certainly deserves more time. He notes as well that defense could be his best argument.
He played much more in the middle than at power forward as a rookie, but according to 82games.com, his defensive PER was much better at the 4. Plumlee's numbers at Synergy Sports Technologies suggest he wasn't comfortable stepping out against jump-shooters, but he's got the mobility and athleticism to guard most 4s.
- Plumlee: I want to start - Mike Mazzeo - ESPN New York
Mason Plumlee among five part-time stars who deserve more minutes - Bradford Doolittle - ESPN Insider