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September 3, 1998

Taylor Dent


Q. Lot of curve balls, right?


Q. A rough day on the mound?

TAYLOR DENT: For sure.

Q. How did you like Drago?


Q. The guy from Rocky IV.

TAYLOR DENT: He played well, I gave him a chance to stuff it up in the third, but he brought it on when he had to.

Q. Big guy, huh?

TAYLOR DENT: Yeah, big guy, big serve.

Q. What's to be learned from matches like this?

TAYLOR DENT: Probably a lot tomorrow, but not much right now. I am a little bit disappointed but -- I wasn't playing -- I didn't hit the ball very well, but I fought hard. He just snuck it by me.

Q. Anything surprise you out there? He seemed to get you moving and then you would get back into it and he was just very consistent.

TAYLOR DENT: He hit the ball big, and I didn't miss much. I just wasn't making very many hard shots today, so I had to change my game.

Q. Now that you played two matches of this level, what do you see you need to do with your game?

TAYLOR DENT: I haven't really played as well as I can at this level yet. So, I mean -- what's to be learned from this match is just -- I'm a little bit inexperienced at this level. I was right there, had him -- he was hanging on by a thread at the end. I had so many opportunities to get breakpoints, but I just couldn't get it. I was close.

Q. Does Phil ever tape matches?

TAYLOR DENT: He doesn't tape them, he sometimes writes down the stats, he does it himself, but he doesn't tape them.

Q. Has he said anything to you yet?

TAYLOR DENT: He said good job, well fought.

Q. Can you tell us a little bit about the -- was it Michael Chang's ex-trainer that you are working with? What's he like, how tough is he?

TAYLOR DENT: He's tough on slacking off, he's always supportive.

Q. His name is?

TAYLOR DENT: Ken Matsuda.

Q. How often do you train with him?

TAYLOR DENT: All the time, like I might do something this afternoon.

Q. What typically is a training session like?

TAYLOR DENT: We do everything different. He takes me in the water, I do sprints, I run up hills, I do stairs, jumping, tons of different stuff.

Q. Besides experience, anything else you were lacking today?

TAYLOR DENT: Like I said before, I wasn't really on my game today, I wasn't against Radulescu either. I was just missing balls every where, it wasn't very fun to play today.

Q. Why do you think you were missing?

TAYLOR DENT: I played in the Hamlet the week before this, I played two really good matches. I was playing just about as good as I could. I mean, I'm just young I guess, and I happen to go off every so often. But I have to hand it to the guy, I fought hard, I gave him a chance to mess up, and he did good.

Q. Have you ever been close to appealing to Ken, can we stop for a while, I am dying out here and he said we have to finish up the session?

TAYLOR DENT: He says I don't want to hear what you feel like just give me the stuff.

Q. Where are you training sessions, in Newport?

TAYLOR DENT: Yeah, in Newport, and he lives up close to L.A.

Q. Where are the hills that you run?

TAYLOR DENT: They are just small hills by where I live, just like streets.

Q. Like around Fashion Island?

TAYLOR DENT: Yeah, sort of around there.

Q. On Jamboree?

TAYLOR DENT: No, that's a long hill, but just inside the complex, not that long, it is a little bit mean for me yet I think.

Q. Where do you think your game will be in a year from now?

TAYLOR DENT: You can't really say. It just depends how I do. I mean, if I -- if you were to ask me that a year ago, I don't think that I would have an answer close to now, you know, you can't tell.

Q. What are you going to do with the $12,000?

TAYLOR DENT: I don't know. Buy a car -- no, I don't know.

Q. What are you driving these days?

TAYLOR DENT: I have an old '77 Porsche.

Q. Is it one of those -- looks really small?

TAYLOR DENT: 911, right, Targa.

Q. Do you do your own mechanical work on that?

TAYLOR DENT: I would like to learn.

Q. How many speeding tickets do you have?

TAYLOR DENT: None, I pride myself on that.

Q. No points on your license at all?

TAYLOR DENT: No points.

Q. What's the story on this car; where did you find it?

TAYLOR DENT: When I was looking for a car I wasn't really expecting to get anything fun. I thought I would just have to get something to putt around in. I was looking through the Auto Trader, I saw this thing for a couple of thousand and I took it to a mechanic and it was in pretty good shape and I just got it.

Q. Did your Dad have any reservations about you getting a sports car?

TAYLOR DENT: He thinks I'm a pretty good driver.

Q. What do you mean he thinks?

TAYLOR DENT: He knows. He drives with me all the time, he has a Camaro, a Z-28, I learned on that.

Q. He taught you to drive?


Q. You haven't inherited your father's color blindness?

TAYLOR DENT: Not yet. I heard I am going to get it with age though.

Q. It is a Targa?


Q. Five speed?

TAYLOR DENT: Five speed.

Q. How long have you had it now?

TAYLOR DENT: Probably six months maybe, not too long.

Q. Has Gamble tried to sell you one of his Jaguars?


Q. Yeah, he collects Jaguars?

TAYLOR DENT: He's big time. He hasn't offered me a Jag yet.

Q. Have you ever played with anybody with that kind of power before in your life?

TAYLOR DENT: Not in a match. I practiced with Agassi indoors before and that was -- but never in a match. He hits the ball pretty big.

Q. It seems like the first few exchanges you were catching your breath after the rallies. I wasn't sure if you were getting used to the pace or if it was just the rhythm of the match?

TAYLOR DENT: We were playing at a fast pace. I was doing most of the running in the beginning. It's sprinting running, it wasn't kind of like heavy topspinning.

Q. Are you ready to hit the Challenger trail now?

TAYLOR DENT: Unfortunately, yes.

Q. Where will you --

TAYLOR DENT: In Palm Springs, Burbank, I think there are four of them.

Q. Does anybody have a nickname for you?

TAYLOR DENT: My dad and my friends call me Tails.

Q. When did that start?

TAYLOR DENT: Ever since I remember.

Q. Is it because he wanted you to get your tail in the house?

TAYLOR DENT: I don't know Tails, Taylor -- kind of short for Taylor.

Q. Having played here against him, do you feel like you belong at this level the way you played in the third set?

TAYLOR DENT: I had a little doubt before. I can play a lot better of what I have been playing against these guys, and I'm still beating them and getting real close, when I lose. There is no doubt in my mind that I only need a little bit of adjustment here and there, and those close matches are going to be going in my favor.

Q. Do you think it's good to go out there and get your nose bloodied a few times?

TAYLOR DENT: For sure, that's the way to do it. If you play too many Juniors and you are always kind of winning comfortably or whatever -- you need to get your but kicked a few times.

Q. Are you going to play the Juniors here?

TAYLOR DENT: Probably I will now.

End of FastScripts....

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