On Ty Lawson's ankle:
"Ankle sprains are ankle sprains. I saw him this morning – he walked into the trainer's room on crutches. And I think it's awfully difficult to go from crutches one day to playing against Duke the next day. But now, you're talking about Dennis the Menace, too. He may have skipped rope all of the way down here and just got the crutches just because he knows I may have been [inaudible]…
Ty said it was a high ankle sprain –
"Again, you're talking to Dennis the Menace. And when Ty told you that, he had not spoken to a single doctor. ‘I've got a left ear problem. This is my right ear… Oh yeah, that's right.' Who knows with Ty. Nobody has a clue. You're talking about a guy that after the injury, he said, ‘That guy just threw me down.' I said, ‘But there's nothing we can do about that now. Let's see if you're hurt.' ‘But he just threw me down!' But again, Ty says it's a high ankle sprain. You know why he knew it was a high ankle sprain? Because it hurt higher up. They told me it was an ankle sprain."
Are there any type of tests that Lawson will go through today at practice?
"I don't even know if he's going to go on the floor. And I'm being honest guys. Somebody yelled at me and said, 'Hey, over in Durham, they think you're trying to trick them.' I said, 'Yeah, I held him out for the last 41 minutes of the game Sunday to trick somebody...' I do not know if he's going to shoot today at practice, [or] if he's going to go through dummy offense today at practice. We're going to have to wait to see what it feels like when he puts his shoe on and walks out there. I know one thing -- he will not jog out there, because he hasn't jogged out there yet in his entire life, unless he's been late."
On the perception that Duke is shooting more 3-pointers this season:
"Somebody would have to put a pencil to it. Myself, I don't think they shoot that many more threes than they have in the past, and I could be wrong. I'm thinking that with J.J. Redick, those guys they shot a lot of threes, J.J., Chris Duhon, Daniel Ewing and all those teams as well. They are playing at a faster pace going up and down the floor. Whether or not Mike attributes that to his work with [Phoenix Suns Head Coach Mike] D'Antoni, with the Olympics or just that he wanted to play faster because of his personnel. I don't know.
"I do think they've always shot a lot of threes. They've always been a team that relied a great deal on dribble penetration and pitch for three. I think that they're still doing that. When they had Shelden Williams for example they had a guy in the low post that they wanted to get the ball to a great deal. When they had Elton Brand they had a guy in the low post that they did a lot with. In the five years that I've been here, other than Shelden, they really haven't had a low post guy. I mean Josh [McRoberts] could go in there, but he wasn't a threat like Shelden was - I'm not trying to bag on Josh by any means.
"To me their offensive style hasn't changed that much once they get it down there. It's just that they drive a Mercedes to get it down there, which is better than what they have in the past."
On getting Thomas ready to play on Wednesday:
"Every time we change whatever we're working on in practice, instead of coming in for the fourth, fifth and sixth possessions, we usually go three possessions at a time and then we sub, he's going to have the first, second and third possessions. He's going to be there with Tyler [Hansbrough], with Wayne [Ellington] and with Marcus [Ginyard]. The change is going to be that he's going to be starting each and every drill we do as opposed to standing on the sideline, and with different people right off the bat."
On his relationship with Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski:
"The first thing it is with Mike as far as I'm concerned is that I have tremendous respect for what he's done, and I mean that, and I'm not saying tongue in cheek. I have tremendous respect for what he's done since those first two or three, whatever number it was, that were difficult years for him at Duke. What he's done has been amazing. I'm not so sure that it's not as good a run as anybody's ever had and better than most. I mean most even though Coach [John] Wooden won all those. It's such a different game nowadays. That's the first part of it is the tremendous respect I have for him.
"We spent a lot of time together on the board of directors at the [National Association of Basketball Coaches], and our thoughts and attitudes about what was good for college basketball were extremely close. We were together on several very large issues that we were involved in, and we still are. Mike is not my bosom buddy. It's hard for somebody to be my bosom buddy if you don't play golf. How can you trust somebody who doesn't play golf, my gosh. So there is a genuine respect, number one, there's a genuine respect because we believe in the same things, number two. What he's done is just remarkable.
"Last year what happened with Gerald [Henderson] and Tyler, I regret that it happened. I didn't want it to happen. I wish it hadn't happened. It hurt Tyler a great deal. No one is ever going to say things that are going to be perfect for the other party. What [Krzyzewski] wasn't perfect for me, what I said wasn't perfect for him. You just have to understand that. That was last year. I came out the very next day and said that Gerald Henderson is a great kid, and it's just something that happened in the heat of the game. It has not had any lasting effect on my relationship with Mike on my end for sure. It's just sometimes it's okay to disagree. I don't think we disagree greatly on even that part of it. I feel good about my relationship with Mike, I do."
On setting up last year's phone call between Gerald Henderson and Tyler:
"It was something that needed to be done I thought because of all the attention being brought to it. Just an unfortunate situation like I've said. For Gerald and Tyler just to be able to talk and clear that up it was important."
On being Henderson's good friend and seeing what fan treatment he will get:
"I'm sure he knows. I'm not too worried about it. That comes along with the accident that happened, so he'll get boos and all that kind of stuff. He'll be expecting it."
On if he expects something extra from Tyler tomorrow night:
"He's always bringing something extra- especially to this game. We'll see, hopefully."
On the difference in the half-court with Quentin instead of Ty:
"I think Ty is so much of a threat all the time because of his speed and quickness and his ability to get to the basket. That's something teams have to worry about a lot. That changes the way teams defend us. `Q' gets in the lane and creates plays for his teammates and I don't think teams respect that as much."
On Gerald Henderson's phone call after last game:
"I think it was more of a thing that he just wanted to get his point across, that he didn't really intentionally do it. You know, it's basketball, and I don't really think he did it like that. It meant something to me; just because he was willing to call me, but my nose was still broken...there are no hard feelings. I knew there was going to be a lot of talk about some tension, but it's Duke versus North Carolina, and I feel like it's one of those rivalries where there is already some of that big hype, and this just kind of added to it."
On Wayne helping resolve between Gerald and Tyler:
"I think he gave Gerald my number, and then he called me. It wasn't like Wayne was a big mediator-counselor type of guy. You guys are making it out like it was really this huge big trauma thing. My nose was just broken, that's the way I looked at it. I still played; I wasn't down for as long as it was broken. I was still happy, and I was able to live a regular life, except for on the court I had to wear a mask."
On refusing to give in:
"I think that's just my style. Sometimes I think, just because some things aren't going my way, I think if I keep going at them, eventually I think some things will fall. That was one of the things where I didn't want to force the game, I just wanted it to come to me."
On adjusting from playing a few minutes to playing over 30:
"You just need to be ready. It's not something you can really prepare yourself for as far as saying `Ok, I know I'm going to play 36 minutes' because I would have never thought that the other game. I always tell myself, like everybody always tells their selves, and coach tells himself, you never know what's going to happen in the course of a game. So prepare yourself and be ready at all times."
On if it's easier to play more minutes than less:
"I'm not going to say it's easy. You definitely get a feel for the game, and just being out there and getting the flow of the game and how's it going. Whether it's 36 minutes or 2 minutes in the game, I just need to do whatever it takes."
On why his level of play has increased in the past month:
"Just trying to focus more, concentrate more, and just be more relaxed, play and have fun. That's the main thing playing at a University like Carolina and seeing all these stories of great players and everything- it could be a lot of pressure. A lot of times I put a lot of pressure on myself, but I need to calm down and have fun."
On possibly playing without Ty:
"We don't what's going to happen with him, but we're planning to play without him. It's not the first time we haven't had him this year. There have been a lot of times in the past where we have had some key guys out, but that doesn't mean we can't play as good as we want to. It doesn't mean we still can't come out with a win, so we still expect to win, we still expect to play good."
On changes in preparation without Ty:
"It doesn't really change anything. We have Q backing him up, and he's just going to have to step up, and we know he's capable of doing it. Last game he stepped up for us. He came in, and we got a win, so hopefully we can do that again. This time, he'll step up even more and be more comfortable out there, and hopefully we'll get a win."
On the importance of getting inside:
"It's always important, always important, taking advantage of our height, but we're going to get the ball inside. We get the ball inside no matter what, if we're the smaller team or the bigger team. Tyler's an All-American; we've got to get him the ball. So we're going to get inside, hopefully get them in foul trouble. The way we're going to use our height to our advantage is by getting offensive rebounds and boxing them out and limiting them to one shot. If we don't do that, then we're not really taking advantage of our height."