home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


July 10, 2021

Mikal Bridges

Phoenix Suns

Practice Day

Q. If you don't end up having Torrey Craig for the next game or two and you’re already without Dario, how does that cut into your depth?

MIKAL BRIDGES: Yeah, so Torrey obviously is a big piece for us and hopefully he recovers and can be out as fast as he can. Next Man Up; thing about us is we have depth, and a guy like Dooley, Doolinator, [Abdel Nader] he'll be ready and just down the line with Frank [Kaminsky] and everybody else, we're all ready and just our opportunity comes, you know, I think everybody's ready for it.

Q. Talking to Chris Paul's teammates, a lot say he makes the game easier for them. If that's the case for you, how does he make the game easier for you as a young player?

MIKAL BRIDGES: Simple as offensively, get a lot of open shots and finding me and creating and bringing so much attention to him leaves open shots for me. I think that's one.

Other things, just defensively, just his voice, I think him just talking makes everything a little bit easier. When you’re out there and you have a guy with his voice, once you hear him talking, everybody else starts talking and makes our defense even more connected.

Q. What's the biggest way you've grown since he's been your teammate?

MIKAL BRIDGES: I just think, thinking the game, I think that's where I've grown from him. All the little things with two for ones and being in the penalty and also being on the other side of that when we're on defense knowing that they are about to go for a two for one or they are in a penalty and watch how they might get a swipe through and just show your hands early. All the little things that go into winning a game adds up, possession by possession, I've learned a lot from him.

Q. Monty Williams has talked about CP and how when he came to town he focused on not just getting his body right or individual game, but with connecting with all of you. What comes to mind off the court, things he might have said or done that convinced you that this is not a future Hall of Famer that is going to worry about himself but lifting the whole group up?

MIKAL BRIDGES: I think just having meals and dinners and watching games, just regular season at his spot. He'll invite us over, like more than welcome to, not like everybody has to come, but like if you're not doing anything, you can pull up, chef's cooking this and that.

In the NBA, usually people have things to do. You get there, think there might be a couple people; are you going, and yeah, there's about like eight to 10 people there, and like, oh, everybody kind of showed up here, you know. You just want to be around this man.

That's what I take away from C, where everybody talks about how good he is as a basketball player; I'm just happy to have him as a friend more than a teammate, just knowing such a great person and he cares about you and wants the best for and you just talks about everything outside of basketball.

Q. How did that fit with the view you had with him? In the Clippers-Rockets chapter, there was talk that he wasn’t always vibing with his teammates.

MIKAL BRIDGES: I knew he was a great teammate just watching, I could just tell he was. I really think watching the video, I think it was him, [Darius] Bazley and Shai [Gilgeous-Alexander], they were doing like a TikTok dance or something, and this was when he was OKC, I was just laughing during quarantine. You could tell, like, they are younger than me. Like they are 22, 21, like they are way younger. They are a couple years younger than me. I'm like look at CP, that's funny, CP is 35 and they are with the two youngest guys on the team. That's hilarious.

I could tell that he clicks with the young guys a lot and that made me think about that when he got here, and it's right off jump street.

Q. The broadcast last game showed an intimate moment between Monty and Deandre where Monty was providing him words of encouragement to help his confidence out there. What does it mean to have a coach that's not only a great basketball mind but that genuinely seems to care about his players?

MIKAL BRIDGES: It's easy to play for a guy like that. It's amazing. You want to go out there and play for Monty. He cares about you more than anything. At the end of the day, basketball, obviously we love it and play it every day but at the end of the day he cares about you as a human and everything and else. It's bigger than basketball with him. It was great to see him. DA was struggling a little bit but he holds himself to a high standard as he should. He's capable of going for 20-20 every single game. It was great to see that, how Coach said the same things I was even thinking, you could tell D.A. was just like, dang, he knows that, like everything I'm thinking in my head, Coach is telling him. Like I know DA needed that and he had big plays, you know, big dunks, layups, o-boards, big blocks. It's unbelievable. Coach is just one of the greatest dudes on this earth.

Q. You won two national titles at Villanova. How much has that helped you during this playoff run and even in the Finals?

MIKAL BRIDGES: Yeah, I think people are saying that, as well. I think it helps but just there's nothing compared to NBA Finals, I think. Nothing compares to it. It's different. It's just different.

But I think playing in those games where everything means -- every single game means, like, a lot, being in that position, definitely helps a lot. Just I know that culture we had at 'Nova, more than just winning, the culture more than anything prepared me for the NBA and for this moment where everything matters, how you carry yourself every single day.

I think that's more, you know that helped me out more than just winning championships. I know it's our culture we had, just how I approach every single day. That's what really helped me. I think 'Nova, how Coach [Jay] Wright and the whole staff and everybody there, how our culture was, helped me.

Q. You are two wins away from the Championship. What goes through your mind at this point in the series and how do you prepare for the reaction of Milwaukee?

MIKAL BRIDGES: Like Monty said, just got to win the next game. Treat it like it's Game 1, just 0-0, this is the most important game, and we've got to lock in. You know, get ready for them, their home, and they will have their crowd with them. We just have to stay playing our way, staying poised.

What was the last part?

Q. How is your preparation for the reaction of the Bucks after the two losses in Phoenix?

MIKAL BRIDGES: We just have to prepare. We know they will come out like they did in Game 2, come out strong, and we've just got to prepare for it. We'll go over it today and be ready, but I think just playing our way and not play like it's 2-0 and play like it's Game 1 is going to help us.

Q. You mentioned the culture more than the competition helped prepare you for this; how did that help prepare you for this moment?

MIKAL BRIDGES: Just playing hard every day. Just playing hard. Coach Wright, same thing off the court, it's bigger than basketball, and it makes you think about life, as well. It's not just basketball. He reminds me so much of Monty, just knowing to take care of yourself and your family, take care of other ones, so kind of get in the league and just kind of turn into a man. You know, you go to school as a young kid, as a boy, and Coach Wright helps you out and you be there, I did four years, and you come out a man and it prepares you for the real world.

I'm telling you, it's just made NBA life way easier. When I first got into the league, going to 'Nova, I can't picture myself coming out of high school or doing a year or two somewhere else and going into the league. I'd feel like fresh, young, don't know what to do with myself. But 'Nova really got me being a man coming into the league and things like that.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297