Utah Jazz's Kevin O'Connor isn't surprised by team's success

Published: Thursday, April 26 2012 11:00 p.m. MDT

Comment about the Jazz being a perennial playoff team (somewhat like the Yankees or Steelers): "It's not there. We haven't won a championship. Those guys have. I think the key thing is that you try and be patient in an impatient world that you live in, and we live in an impatient world. The best example I have is Nate McMillan, all the success that he had up there, dragging those teams through all the injuries and everything (in Portland). He had two-and-a-half bad weeks and they fire him. I mean, that to me, I don't understand it. But that's, I guess, I shouldn't be in somebody else's business."

What he thinks of fans who'd prefer team keeping first-round pick instead of making playoffs: "We have had two first-round picks two years ago (Gordon Hayward and Derrick Favors), two first-round picks a year ago (Enes Kanter and Alec Burks) and we got Jeremy (Evans), who we like. That's five young players. It's not like we have to have an infusion of younger talent. That's not something that's paramount.…We got kids that have busted their butt for 65 games to make the playoffs. For us to say, we're disappointed we made (the playoffs) because we didn't get the 13th or 14th pick in the draft is sacrilegious to me. You keep score. Why not win."

What it means to make the playoffs again: "It's good for the organization. I'm happy the players who played uphill a lot of the year weren't predicted to be very good. Some of the guys who have had hard knocks at other places have come here and we've kind of put it together."

Does this put Jazz on championship path?: "We always are striving for that, whether it keeps us on that or puts us on that I don't know. You never know that.…But I don't think we're treading water, because if you brought everyone back from this team next year we'd be better.…Every player can get better next year and that's going to improve us and if we can add a piece that's really gonna help."

Email: jody@desnews.com

Twitter: DJJazzyJody

Blog: Jazzland.blogs.deseretnews.com

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