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November 19, 2018

Mike Krzyzewski

Tre Jones

Cam Reddish

Lahaina, Maui, Hawaii

Duke - 90

SDSU - 64

MEGAN GODFREY: We'll start with an opening statement from coach.

MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Yeah, we played well. I thought San Diego State was really ready for us. They have their veterans and their starting five. They're an outstanding, they're a really good team. Obviously Brian does a great job. They have a terrific program.

In the first half, one, just adjusting to the environment that they're playing in. It was really hot in there and for both teams, but it's tough to simulate that. So I thought the end of half was crucial. We got a perfect two for one. We had six points and ended. And then we started the second half poorly, then all of a sudden we rebounded and our transition game got going and we kind of exploded. But it was a good win for us, we beat a good team, and on to the second game.

MEGAN GODFREY: Take questions for the student-athletes, please.

Q. For Tre and Cam, obviously you guys were big stars in high school but what has it been like dealing with just the buzz and the popularity and the hype since you've arrived at Duke?
CAM REDDISH: For me I tried to really just ignore it. Just continue to just work hard, listen to coach, and basically trust my teammates and get better every day. Really just ignoring all the press.

TRE JONES: Like Cam said, trying to ignore it. We've got a lot of hype going around right now and the coaches been trying to keep us real humble, just trying to have us keep working hard and improving every single day so that we'll be ready for our next game.

Q. Tre, tonight you had season high points. Early in the season you were kind of more of a distributor and a setting up for your team, but tonight you really started to cut to the basket and score lot. What kind of went into your mindset in terms of just becoming the go-to scorer in the first half?
TRE JONES: Right. I was just reading the defense. They were helping a lot off of me, trying to plug gaps on RJ and Cam and Zion's drives and that left open lanes for me to either attack or cut, and my teammates did a great job of finding me so I was an I believe to make those plays.

Q. For both guys, coach told me yesterday that you guys not really aware that Duke came in here 15-0. You're now 16-0 in this building, Duke is. Were you guys aware of that, and what was it like to play in that atmosphere that coach was talking about in a gym that you probably watched games on before?
CAM REDDISH: Yeah, it was a ton of fun. We went out there just played super hard like coach told us to do and I think as simple as that.

TRE JONES: Right. We don't really worry about the record. We worry about just ourselves right now and trying to come into every game ready to play. And so the coaches did a great job in preparing us for today's game and we're going to go back to the hotel and probably get prepared for tomorrow's game as well.

Q. There seems to be such an effortless flow with you guys, not a lot that's forced, nobody seems to be worried about how many shots they're taking. Where does that come from and how much of that was based on the relationship that particularly the four freshmen had prior to getting to Duke?
CAM REDDISH: For us the main goal is just to win. We all just want to win. We're going out there playing together trusting the coach, trusting each other and basically just playing together.

TRE JONES: The coaches do a great job in making sure that we're not worried about those things. We're worried about things that will actually make us better. So there's a lot of little things like playing defense, talking, getting back in transition, rebounding, things like that that will actually make us better rather than worrying about personal stats.

Q. You guys you do move the ball fluidly. Obviously you as a point guard, that's expected, but there's some guys on this team that pass the ball so well and seem to find each other really well so early. Why do you think you guys are so interconnected in terms of your offense?
TRE JONES: Right. Like Cam said, we all just want to win at the end of the day. So I mean we're going to come in to every game prepared, but I mean we're going to do everything we can just to win. And so making that extra pass and passing up on good shots for great shots is a thing that we're going to be doing a lot.

Q. For both players, Zion got in foul trouble a little bit early. You could see him a little frustrated. How do you kind of keep each other going when you get into those moments even though you were able to overcome it? How did you two kind of support him when he was clearly frustrated early on?
CAM REDDISH: We talked to him, support him, encourage him. Obviously you guys know what he's capable of doing and we know what he's capable of doing, so just encouraging him and keeping his head up.

TRE JONES: It's a long game, and we just know that the next guy up is always going to be ready. So I mean we got Jack and Jav that came off the bench and gave us great minutes for Zion when he was in foul trouble, but coach doesn't sit anybody when they get two fouls. So Zion was still able to play some minutes there in the first half and contribute Ted really well.

Q. You guys have seen Zion do some pretty crazy stuff. Do you ever get used to it? That windmill dunk today, how does that juice you guys up, and what do you think when he does something like that?
CAM REDDISH: You know, yeah, you don't know what to think. It's crazy. Yeah, he's different and it's really fun to watch.

MEGAN GODFREY: Take questions now for coach.

Q. What did you like about the first half, the way you guys played offense to get all those open 3-pointers and take advantage of that?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Yeah, they clogged the lane. By the way, I didn't notice it until they were asking questions, brought a smile to my face to see the chair for Jim O'Connell and God bless him. This was one of his favorite, favorites, and he was the only guy to ever come here and never see the beach. And even coaches on the day off or something, we walk the beach, he would, he wouldn't do that. So that's a cool thing.

Repeat your question. I was in a different mood. Oh the first half?

Q. The first half the way you guys moved the ball on offense to get all those 3-pointers?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Well they clogged the lane. They did a little bit like what Army did to us and tried to get -- not less us penetrate completely to the bucket. And the one dribble penetration, as long as our guys were ready to shoot, they were ready to shoot and they knocked them down. I thought that was the differential in the first half. And it was, it, the last two possessions made it even more, because the two for one were the two threes. So the three-point shot was really the differential in the first half.

Q. One of the things I've heard from coaches for years is that regardless of how talented your freshmen are it can be difficult, especially early, to rely this heavily on first-year players. Why do you think this is going so well?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Well it's gone well. We have had to rely on young players for a few years now, so we're accustomed to doing that. I'm not saying we're as advanced as this group is, but that's our culture right now and these guys are really good kids. They're really good basketball players. So because they're not positional, they, if you're positional you usually get anxious to touch the ball to score because you don't know how many times you're going to touch it. When it's position-less you're touching the ball and you're playing basketball and that's, that's our team this year. It's, so the ball finds the best shot and they like that because they're basketball players and their futures will be fine whether they average 18 or 14, as long as they keep learning how to play. So that helps us, the fact that we have four guys who can bring the ball up the court on a defensive rebound or steal. We talk about Zion and the windmill dunk, but, to me his lateral movement and the steals and his hands are more, are bigger than that. I mean that's a bang that he had five steals today, you know, and when he gets his hands on the ball he makes plays. And that's what Jack White did today. Jack got us about 12 to 14 extra possessions with eight rebounds and loose balls. So right now we have a team that has really good hands, really good hands. We just have to keep building our team on those strengths.

Q. What are both the advantages and disadvantages of having such a short amount of time to prepare for a team like Auburn?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Well, it's for both teams. They have more veterans, but Maui puts you in unusual situations. I think overall those situations, if you handle them well get you better. If you don't handle them well, you lose. But you learn why you can lose. So it's the way it is. And everyone, some people say it's like a conference tournament, and it's not like a conference tournament because you're not on a beach, you haven't flown 11 hours, you haven't, it's not a conference tournament. The other thing is, by the time you have a conference tournament you know the guys, you don't need a scouting report as much, you've played against that team probably twice. And so it's unusual. And so we get to see how our young guys do in that situation against a Top-10 team, a very well coached team.

Q. You said you felt like you played really well. Can you get a sense winning about --
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: I don't know, what do you think?

Q. I thought you did too.

Q. But the question is can you get a sense of how good the other team is, how good San Diego State is?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Yeah, yeah, because, look, we had two plays right at the end of the half or else it's a 11-point game. And they started off the half, second half great, and then we do have explosive ability. If we can get a steal or get the defensive rebound, with our ball handlers they're very good in transition. They make, they almost always make the right play. I'm not sure how many teams have that many ball handlers. I hope we can get that in every game that we play. But, so then it's over, you know what I mean? It's over. So our team, if they do, that has the ability to knock a team out. And we're fortunate we did because if it keeps going they're well coached, Watson, McDaniels, Mitchell, those guys are good players. They won their league. They're an NCAA, those kids played in the NCAA tournament and almost beat Houston. I saw Watson knock down two threes against Houston to almost win that first round game as a 11th seed. So they will be good and their young guys are going to continue to get better because they have a program there. Steve and his staff, they have been there for 20 years, I think 20, yeah. And so they just play good basketball.

Q. Many teams don't start the season looking like a well-tuned machine like your team. What is it about this crop of gentlemen that it appears that they have bought in and they have bought in early. What's so special about them?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Yeah, well they're over themselves. It's not about them. They're very secure and they have been parented well, they have been coached well, and so they understand being part of something bigger than them, but still being really good. The spotlight is bigger, their stuff will show if the spotlight's on the whole team. And their a pleasure, I mean they're really a pleasure to coach. They get along so well. Hopefully we can stay healthy, do well again tomorrow, and continue to advance. But we recognize that the team we play tomorrow is capable, definitely capable of beating us and beating anybody, really. So that will be a good test for us.

Q. You talked yesterday about the security that your upperclassmen have as well. Is there a way that you can talk to them? I mean, it's a big role for them to not be, to be deferential to the talent that they're up against, but also be leaders. Do you talk to them about handling that balance?
MIKE KRZYZEWSKI: Yeah, we actually started that this summer, where every time we watched tape, and I told them we're going to elevate the role of the role player and the importance of that role player. And giving them examples. There are academy awards, Tony's for best supporting actor and Beyonce has a background group that all of a sudden they get really good, you might have your own group. And but -- do what Coach Wooden said a long time ago, do what you're capable of doing at the highest level and don't let what you don't do that well get in the way. And it's really simple great advice. The Canadian trip helped Jack find himself in that way. Javin, Marques, did not have a good trip, but he learned from it. And we need Alex, the other guys, Jack, Alex, Javin, Marques, Antonio, when you watch them, I think you can see they feel good about themselves and they have great interaction with their teammates. And their teammates applaud them. So it's a good thing. I mean it's one of those things we have great, great chemistry. And with secure people it's a lot easier and we have a very secure group in that way.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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