The NBA Draft held its final session of media availability Wednesday afternoon, allowing 12 of the 14 players that were invited to this year's draft to field rapid-fire questions from the press.
Duke guard Austin Rivers was among the players in attendance. Here are some of Rivers' thoughts on his year at Duke this year's NBA Draft:
On his interviews with several NBA teams:
"It was mostly questions I had figured they were going to ask. A lot of people prepare for it, but I was already prepared for it because I was going to give them the truth about every answer. That's what my dad told me, not just to say what they want to hear. Teams know when guys are telling the truth and they are not."
On how he addressed teams when they asked about his confidence:
"I just tried to be 100-percent real with every interviewer, when they said I was cocky I told them I'm not. I told them I'm cocky in a good way where I feel like I'm confident on the court and I can help anybody and I can do what I need to win. That's my confidence. I just had to explain to them who I really am."
On how Duke prepared him to enter the NBA:
"I think Duke is the best place to prepare you to tell you the truth. You can't go wrong with Kentucky and Kansas and Carolina, but I think Coach K is the best coach. You don't get any better than that. He's going to challenge you more than any coach. That's why I went there. He taught me how to be a better person and a better man."
On how his experience at Duke has made him a more mature basketball player:
"I just think you're able to handle the main stage better. When you play at Duke, every game is the biggest game. Every game people want you to lose. Every game people yell at you and hate you. I think when you have to deal with that every night with Coach K he's going to teach you how to handle those situations. Coming into the pros I think I have a better understanding of that. I just know how to deal with the media scrutinizing me and turn that into motivation. I think Coach K and Duke University's staff have been a huge help from me."
On how the pressure of the NBA impacted his college career:
"Towards the end of the year I just started playing better and better because I just stopped thinking about the NBA. I was just thinking about winning and having fun at college. I had a great time at Duke."
On his adjustment to the college game:
"There are times when there are challenges but now when you look back at it college just made me so much better as a player and a person. Look at the games we won this year and what we were a part of. I was a part of the team that won Coach K's 903rd game, we won the Maui Invitational, we beat Carolina at Carolina, we went undefeated on the road in the ACC. I got to make relationships with my new best friends and coaches."
On possibly playing for the Toronto Raptors (the Raptors selected 8th overall in tomorrow's draft):
"I think I had a good workout with them. I don't know which direction they're going to go in. I think I have good standing with them as well as Portland (who selects 6th and 11th overall), New Orleans (1st and 10th), Phoenix (13th) and some other teams. It's hard to read these NBA GMs but I know it will be one of those four. I'm just excited to see what happens."
On where he might be selected in the NBA Draft:
"I think so many people get caught up in how high they go, instead of where they go. Part of my competitive nature is that I want to be picked as high as possible but part of me remembers that it's about where you go and where you fit in. If you go to the right fit that's better than being selected with a high pick."
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