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February 18, 2005

P.J. Carlesimo

Alex English


ALEX ENGLISH: Well, I'm honored and excited to be here, especially to be back in Denver, getting an opportunity to watch these young players play against each other up close, and then to coach with Coach P.J. Carlesimo is going to be fantastic.

P.J. CARLESIMO: Obviously I'd like to echo what Alex said. It's great that our guys put us in position to be here, so obviously the Spurs guys, they didn't want us to take a vacation, they wanted us to be here and pretend to work a little bit. For our young guys and we talked about it this morning, for the Rookies to interact with Alex and see somebody who has been one of the greats in our league and a Hall of Famer, and all he has accomplished it's a great learning experience for them and it's a lot of fun to get to know -- I've been out of college so long, I used to know all of the young guys coming into the league and now I don't know any of them. It's great, you get to learn a little bit about the young guys and hopefully have a good time tonight.

Q. Bob McAdoo said he wanted the game to be very competitive and he talked about it to the players. Did you talk to them, also about it?

P.J. CARLESIMO: Who said that?

Q. Bob McAdoo.

P.J. CARLESIMO: Yeah, I hope he tells his players that. We like to tell the officials that, too. I think if Bob says that and the officials buy in, then we'll have a very competitive game. I think that -- I think it's going to be difficult for the Sophomores to hang with us, but hopefully it will be competitive. It will be great.

Q. Last year, the game was criticized because it wasn't really competitive and ended up being a dunk contest.

P.J. CARLESIMO: I didn't see it, and that was one of the reasons that I think it's so important for, you know, our guys to see somebody like Alex and for them to -- for them to understand how he played throughout his career and what's expected of them, and I think that the young guys, though, that's one of the reasons I think the Sophomores are going to play so hard tonight. The Sophomores obviously were the Rookies last year. I didn't compare the rosters but probably a lot of them were the same and they got criticized last year. So I think they will bring it a little more tonight, unfortunately for us. Yeah, it should be -- maybe it won't be, you know, competitive on the scoreboard the way we'd like, but if both teams play hard and they play good basketball, that's all anybody cares about.

Q. You just said you thought it would be difficult for the Sophomores to hang with you, is that a little tongue-in-cheek?

P.J. CARLESIMO: No, I think our guys are focused and we're ready, and if Doo (McAdoo) is going to hold back some of his guys, he's got to save Dwyane and LeBron for Sunday, and Melo is tired from all of the obligations in Denver this weekend, so we'll be fine.

Q. The last two, three, four years, there was always like three, four European players or foreign players on the team and this year there is only one, Beno (Udrih), do you think that this generation might not be as good as the ones that were before?

P.J. CARLESIMO: No. Who are the -- I should know this and I don't. Who are the freshmen, who are the rookie international players? To be honest with you, so many of the international guys will already been here and had success. There are probably some that I'm forgetting. I don't mean to slight them. A lot of times who gets to play in this game is a function of what team they are on and whether they get a chance to play with their team. Probably no one would have expected somebody from San Antonio, but Beno came into a good situation as Tony's backup and he gets to play every night and he plays well. I don't think it's any indication of that. If anything, the international players have dominated, the way they have been coming over, and so many of them are having great success. I think it's a function of how much of a chance they got to play. There are so many guys in the Eastern Conference, Alex knows all of these players, a lot of them we only see one time, that's just the way it was. There's opportunity to play in a lot of the Eastern Conference teams. Most of the West Conference teams have guys coming back and they are loaded, and it's been hard for the young guys to play.

End of FastScripts...

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