Jan. 13, 2010
Sharp-shooting sophomore Elston Turner was one of the bright spots from the recent Arizona trip, averaging 10 points and hitting five three-point buckets. The son of former NBA player and current Houston Rockets assistant coach, Elston Turner Sr., is averaging 5.4 points per game in his second year with the Huskies. He is viewed as one of the team's best shooters, but had struggled to find his stroke recently until his breakout performance on the road. Turner recently spoke to GoHuskies.com about growing up with an NBA father and how he developed into a shooter.
GoHuskies.com: How much has having a dad coach in the NBA influence your game?
Elston Turner: My dad taught me everything I know since I was two or three years old. I think that is one of the reasons why I think I have a pretty good basketball IQ and I don't make that many mistakes. I think because he taught me everything and knows the game so well, it is better off for me.
GH.com: Do you have any standout stories such as being somewhere or meeting someone that stands out?
ET: I would say probably when I was in 8th grade. I watched the Sacramento Kings practice when he was coaching [Elston Turner Sr.] and I went through a workout with him and Bobby Jackson. Me and Bobby were going at it. We were doing drills like cone drills and one-on-one, stuff like that. I think that is when I got my confidence and it just felt like if I could do this with NBA players, I could do this with anybody.
GH.com: Did he [Bobby Jackson] go by you a couple times?
ET: Pretty much every time [laughing].
GH.com: When did you realize that shooting was one of your strengths?
ET: The start of high school when I started playing the guard position because in middle school I played in the post so I was inside most of the time. If I had a three I would take it and make it. In high school that is when I started playing the guard position. From there, I just learned that is what I can do.
GH.com: You average 11.7 points on the road and only 4.2 at home, are you more comfortable playing on the road than most people? Or does it depend on who you play?
ET: I think that's more to do with it [depending on the opponent]. On the road it seems like we have a lot more problems. Feels like I need to step up my game more and we seem to handle our business at home. We play a lot different when we are at home than on the road. I think that is what has to do with it.
GH.com: What kind of mindset do you have when teams play zone defense?
ET: It doesn't really change from when they play man. As soon as I get on the court it is my job to make shots and make things happen on the offensive end. If they are going to play zone thinking that we don't have that many shooters then it is my job to make them pay for it.
GH.com: What kind of advice has your dad given you when you struggle?
ET: Keep our heads up because he knows we are a good team. I know we are a good team. From an individual standpoint he tells me to be more aggressive and make it easier for Quincy and Isaiah and to stretch out the defense.