New Opportunities

Point guard Raymond Felton had a conference call with the Dallas media on Tuesday afternoon, providing his first public remarks since the trade between Dallas and New York was made.

There was plenty to discuss, and Felton commented on everything that was asked. He is what he had to say.

On his reaction to hearing that he was being traded to Dallas:

“I was very excited. You know, just a new opportunity and a fresh start. I had a lot of tough things that went on last year in New York. So, just to be able to put those things behind me and get a fresh start with a new organization and a great organization at that, I was very excited about it.”

On what he can bring to Dallas:

 ”Just a tough, gritty point guard who is looking to win first and not really worried about scoring and how many numbers he’s got. Just somebody who is looking to win, who has won at every level and is going to bring it every night. I’m just a tough, gritty point guard that plays on both ends and can do pretty much a little bit of everything.”

On if he’s a starter or reserve in Dallas:

“Whatever my role is that coach Rick Carlisle and the Mavs need me to do, I’m going to play my role, no matter what it is.”

On what exactly went wrong in New York over the last season:

“Things go haywire when you don’t win games. I think that was the big thing last year. We weren’t winning, we didn’t have the season that we had the year before. Things got a little crazy. There was a lot of stuff, a lot of speculation, a lot of stuff being said in the media. In New York, that’s probably the biggest media outlet there is as far as so many writers, blogs and everything. When you’ve got so many things going on, it can mess with guys mentally. But it’s no excuse. That doesn’t help when you’ve got young guys on your team.”

On still being about to play with Tyson Chandler, now in Dallas:

“It’s going to be great. Me and Tyson had a great relationship on and off the court. Just to have a guy with me who has been in Dallas, won a championship in Dallas, that’s going to help me with my transition. I know a few of the guys on that team, as well. It’s definitely going to help me to have Tyson down with me.”

On Chandler’s leadership:

“Tyson is definitely great leader on and off the court. It’s going to be a lot of fun to have him there with me.”

On playing with Dirk Nowitzki and how he can make life easier:

“As a point guard, it’s great to have a big man that can really shoot the ball like he does. Dirk has always been one of my favorite players in the NBA. To get the opportunity to play with him will be really fun. For me, it’s my job to make easy for him by penetrating and make his guy try to help and try to make things easier for him.”

On Rick Carlisle saying that he’s excited to have a motivated player this season:

“I’ve just have to show everybody that I’ve still got it. I still can play, I still can play this game at this level. I can still play this game as an elite point guard at this level. That’s just all. When you come off a season like I had last season, it’s always a point that you’ve got to prove to yourself coming back the next year. And trust me, I look forward to it.”

On trying to convince Carmelo Anthony to come to the Mavericks:

“If I can convince that man to do that, that would be great. Like I told him before , I would love to play with him, it would be great. He’s been my friend his high school. But Carmelo’s got to do what’s best for Carmelo. And only he’s going to make that whole decision by himself.”

On how much conditioning was a factor for his overall performance this season:

“Conditioning wasn’t a factor. I got hurt early on. Once I got hurt – I pulled my groin – I came back and I pulled it and popped it. Injuries hurt me a lot last year. Conditioning was never the issue. I was just fighting with a lot of injuries, and I was fighting with a lot of mental stuff off the court, but like I said earlier, I don’t make any excuses. Last season was all my fault. It was nobody else’s but mine. I take the blame for it totally. Like I said, I look forward to this year. I’m putting all that behind me last year. I’m looking forward to this year with the Mavs.”

On if he is as healthy now as he’s been in recent years:

“No question. At this point in the summer, I’m probably in the best shape I’ve ever been in the past four or five summers this early.”

On what he’s doing differently this summer:

“I’m just getting after it. I’ve got a lot of things that motivate me this summer. I’m just really getting after it, just working extra, extra hard. I’m not really doing anything different, just doing it more and working at it harder.”

On if his legal situation is completely in his past now in his eyes and the eyes of the law:

“All of that stuff should be completely in my past before I even come there. It’s a good thing coming there and I won’t be in New York so that stuff won’t be hanging over my head.”

On what system works best for him:

“Uptempo, free-flowing, a lot of screen and rolls, the system I’m coming into now in Dallas. I look forward to it. You’ve got guards like Monta [Ellis], and I think we just signed Devin Harris again. It’s going to be a lot of fun to play with those guys. … I look forward to playing with everybody on this roster. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

On if there’s enough in Dallas to make some noise in the playoffs or if more moves are necessary:

“Obviously, if we can get Carmelo it would be great to have a player of his caliber. But I’m pretty sure we’re going to add some more guys even if we don’t get Carmelo. We’re going to be able to add some more guys to the team that’s going to help.”

On if he had a chance to watch what Dallas did against San Antonio in the playoffs:

“I feel like they had just as much of a chance to win in the series as San Antonio. That’s a positive to look at. Hopefully I can help the team and we can get over that hump.”