On the latest episode of "Hustle Play with Chris Boucher", Boucher and Christian Koloko discuss what it's like to be coached by Nick Nurse. The full episode can be watched on our YouTube channel or listened to on the Hustle Play podcast feed.
- --so far. Give me your thoughts on Coach Nick.
CHRISTIAN KOLOKO: Oh, he's been cool. He's been cool. Me, like I said, coming in, I'm a second round pick playing the amount of minutes I'm playing. He's amazing, you know? He just showed that he believe in me, you know?
And every time he just put me out there, he just asks me to do what I'm best at. Just go out there, play hard. And he's just been a good coach so far. We haven't really had any issue, anything like that. So it's been really nice experience so far for me to play under Coach Nurse.
- So Chris, it seems like Coach Nick Nurse has been trusting you a lot. You've been balling out since the beginning of the season. Tell me about your mindset coming into the season, and what your training was like during the summer.
CHRIS BOUCHER: Like I said, just trying to figure out the system. I think that was something that just [? gets ?] a little bit of time in Toronto, just knowing all the schemes, knowing where to be at, what you could bring to the team, and being able to bring it every day.
So like I said, I feel like I had a couple of seasons in Toronto where it was all offense. Last year, people saw me more for, like, energy, defense--
- Hustle play.
CHRIS BOUCHER: --all all that-- also, yeah, hustle play, [? [CLICKS TONGUE] ?] I got it. So-- [LAUGHS] so I had-- And then I wanted to be able to put both of them together and be efficient and all that. Also getting older, I think that helps.
But I know the scheme a lot more. Playing defense now, I don't see it like a burden like I see it before. The nights that the ball don't go in, I still try to play as hard on defense. And I think that really helped me out with my relationship with Coach, and just building some trust.
And I've been in different situations, I'm not making the old, same mistakes, I think. That's the same reason why I think he started to play a lot too, you know? He doesn't make a lot of mistakes, plays hard, defends the paint, takes rebounds, finishes.
- Runs like a deer.
CHRIS BOUCHER: Yeah, I mean, he wants tall guys that can run and do all that together. And obviously, we fit that style. And it's a really good place for us to be at right now, and just be able to help this team do a lot of things, and not take it for granted.
But I think the best thing with coach is that he's going to keep you on edge every time. So you've got to play right. You can't take one game where you think you're going to be slacking. Because your minutes going to go away real quick.
- What is the message like from Nick Nurse coming into the season? Does it change from year to year, or is it consistently the same message he's trying to push to you?
CHRIS BOUCHER: No, at first-- I mean, at first, it was a little bit different, you know? Like, we'll see what he brings. We'll see what he worked on and see what he could change and do better.
Then after that, it was like, limit the mistakes. Because we know you could bring it on offense. But on defense, you're killing us. And then now, it's more like, well, we need the same energy every day.
And I know my job, you know what I'm saying? So like, if a game, I came in, and I felt like-- I'll think about certain plays that I know that I would have got. I know it's my energy that was lower. And that means that I should have brought more energy. So that's really what he tells me, just to play hard, and do the little things, fix the little things, try to-- [? and ?] [? play ?] myself into the game.