NBA Finals Q&A: Heat's Joel Anthony says playing for Lon Kruger 'one of the best decisions of my life'

Heat center Joel Anthony, a former UNLV player, remembers OU men's basketball coach Lon Kruger fondly. The two men helped the Runnin' Rebels reach the NCAA Tournament. Anthony believes Kruger can put together a tournament team in Norman.
BY RJ YOUNG Modified: June 11, 2012 at 4:44 pm •  Published: June 11, 2012
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Heat center Joel Anthony, a former UNLV player, remembers OU men's basketball coach Lon Kruger fondly. The two men helped the Runnin' Rebels reach the NCAA Tournament in 2007 after a seven-year drought. Anthony believes Kruger can put together a tournament team in Norman.

Q: Has Kruger always been such a nice guy?

A: Yeah. From the day I met him. That's always been his reputation. A great guy, great coach, great individual. I definitely enjoyed my time of being able to learn from him.

Do you think Kruger can rebuild the program at OU?

Definitely. He has his reputation, obviously, for a reason. He pays attention to the details of the game. He makes sure things are done the right way. I was (at UNLV) the first year that he was there also. To see how he goes about it, he's really a good fit for that program and for what they want to do. I'm very confident he'll take them there.

Why did you want to play for him?

I heard from other people that he was a really good coach. He had a lot of experience. Also, how he would develop his players. He pays attention to his players both on the court and off the court. I was able to develop — it sounds kind of cliché — but I developed as a player and as a man. I learned a lot from him. One of the biggest things is that I trusted him — fully. He's someone I could fully trust and allow him to coach me, allow him to teach me. It was one of the best decisions of my life to be able to grow as an individual.


by Steve Lackmeyer
Reporter Sr.
Steve Lackmeyer is a reporter and columnist who started his career at The Oklahoman in 1990. Since then, he has won numerous awards for his coverage, which included the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, the city's Metropolitan...
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