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June 28, 2012

Dion Waiters


Q.  If you can give us your opening remarks about being drafted by Cleveland.
DION WAITERS:  Just a blessing, not having worked out with the team and just their faith in what they see in me; I can't ask for much more.

Q.  Talk about going from being a role player in a college team to being expected to being a starter on a professional team.
DION WAITERS:  It's great.  I played as a starter all my life until I got to Syracuse and I think Syracuse helped me out a lot.  As far as being a team player, just having to sacrifice.  I went there, I wasn't the starter, because, you know, the guys before they, they had been there for a while, so I didn't know how to adjust to that my freshman year.  Coming out the high school, Top 15 player, given everything, and coming there, having to work for it, I didn't know how to handle it.
My second year, I knew my role coming in.  I knew what I had to do.  I excelled at it.

Q.  You said that you didn't work out for Cleveland; were you shocked to hear your name?
DION WAITERS:¬† Kind of.¬† But I left that up to my agent to do all that.¬† I just tried to stay as stress‑free as I could, and you know, I was just letting him take care of everything.
Like I said, I'm blessed to be in this situation, and I can't wait to get to Cleveland.

Q.  Now that you know you're going to Cleveland, what is it about the organization that stands out to you?
DION WAITERS:  Just the fan base, the crowd.  They come to every game and they support the city, and it's a great city.  I was there my freshman year and played in a tournament there.  Calm city, quiet, things like that.

Q.¬† And of course playing with Kyrie Irving ‑‑
DION WAITERS:  I'm excited to play alongside my brother.  I've known him for six or seven years, and we have been texting and talking forever.  He was the first person that greeted me off the stage and gave me a hug and told me, welcome to Cleveland.  That meant a lot to me.

Q.  Wanted to ask you about how Cleveland has been progressing the last couple of years under Byron Scott.  How much are you looking forward to helping him continue that progression?
DION WAITERS:  I just want to do whatever I have to do to help us win.  Coach, he's been here before and he's played in the NBA, so it's my job to pick his brain as much as I can to get better in the league and just work hard and try to get wins, and one day get a championship.  Just keep taking steps, moving forward.

Q.  It's a lot of conversation about having a big 3; Kyrie, 1, and then you, 2.  Does that come across in your mind to say, hey, I'm the second one, or we can get a third one, and then after that, community service opportunities, they are big in Cleveland for athletes.
DION WAITERS:  Yeah, you know, we've got to play together, a group of guys who is willing to win, play with each other.  I just can't wait to play alongside Kyrie, because I know he can help me.  He's been here before.  I'm going to try to just pick his brain as much as I can, also.
Moving forward, whatever Cleveland decides to do with the Draft or free agency, whatever, try to get another player, I'm fine with it.

Q.  About a month ago, we sat in a gym and you told me, no, I'm trying to go top five, and I shook my said; what did you know then that I didn't?
DION WAITERS:  Confidence.  It's confidence.  You really can't listen to a lot of people because you never know what can happen in certain situations.  Somebody telling me I'm going 15 to 20, I don't listen to that.  So it's all about hard work and knowing what you put in.
You know, just believing, and just thanking the Man above every day for putting me in the position I'm in today.

Q.  You thought you were moving up yesterday; was there any surprise that it was 4?
DION WAITERS:  I mean, yeah, and no, at the same time.  Because like I said, you never know in these situations.  You never know especially for a guy that has not worked out for anybody.  The only thing you can do is go by what you hear.  My agent has been giving me good feedback and the only thing I can do is keep believing, keep my hopes up and things like that.

Q.  It was kind of unconventional to make the decision to not work out for any team.  So explain how your agent explained that to you and why you guys made that decision.
DION WAITERS:  Anything he tells me you can't question.  He's been in this game for a long time, and I've got a lot of faith in both of them.  I think that whatever he told me, it was best for me.  He told me he thinks I should shut it down and just go home and work hard, and that's what I did.  I'm here today and I'm thankful for listening to him.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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