'I know I can shoot': Malachi Flynn on remaining confident in himself

Raptors guard Malachi Flynn discusses gaining confidence with additional minutes, trusting in his abilities, Jeff Dowtin catching his eye a few years ago and how he celebrated Thanksgiving.

Video Transcript

- Malachi, you've had a decent little run here with some study time. How much of a difference does that make just to know you're going to see the floor regularly, and how's that helped your confidence?

MALACHI FLYNN: It helps a lot, you know? Also, teammates give me confidence, coaches, everybody around me. So it definitely feels good to play those minutes.

- [INAUDIBLE] you're shooting so well from 3. Is that just, again, just you found a rhythm early, or did you kind of address that in the offseason a little bit?

MALACHI FLYNN: I mean, I obviously put work in. But I think this year, just going out and being more confident, taking the shots that come to me, and not thinking about it even if I miss a couple in a row, just not thinking about the next one, just letting her go because I know I can shoot.

- What have these last few weeks been like, show up to practice, not sure how many people are going to be available going into games, not sure how many guys you'll have? What has that sort of been like to adjust to from game to game?

MALACHI FLYNN: I mean, you just got to roll with it. You never-- each game has kind of been somebody different out. But that's why we got 17 guys on the roster, you know? Next man up, and you just got to come to play.

- Is just like when you came in and the Tampa season when COVID was really unpredictable? It's like, this seems like it's sort of been your whole career up to this point, [INAUDIBLE].

MALACHI FLYNN: A little bit. This kind of feels like Tampa, guys getting sick. Obviously, it's not COVID, but guys being out left and right. I think people are starting to feel better, though. I think we'll be back pretty soon.

- This schedule where you guys are playing, like, all the time, and suddenly, you've had three days off, what's that like for you? Is it weird to try and get a rhythm while you got so many days off?

MALACHI FLYNN: No, I think for us, it kind of helps, especially with guys being sick, you know, two or three days. That's big. So hopefully, we can keep getting guys back.

- Off the court, how did you spend Thanksgiving yesterday?

MALACHI FLYNN: With the fam. They cooked. I don't do no cooking. So I'm glad they came out and helped me do that.

- How much of [INAUDIBLE]?

MALACHI FLYNN: Everything except turkey. It takes too long. So we didn't have time for that. Yeah.

- Is that the whole family come up or--

MALACHI FLYNN: Nah, just my sister, her two kids, and her husband. So, just a small portion. Yes.

- Got one cook, right?

MALACHI FLYNN: Yeah, right. That's all we need.

- You have to rent them like a separate space? Like, what's the most of your brothers and sisters that have ever been in the city?

MALACHI FLYNN: Usually only one or two. It's just too many people for them to come all at once. So they've got to break it up. Rent their time out, basically.

- What's the favorite dish?

MALACHI FLYNN: Macaroni, sweet potatoes, chicken wings. [INAUDIBLE].

- But you've won.

MALACHI FLYNN: Yes, I had to name those three. That was [INAUDIBLE].

- OK, fair enough.

MALACHI FLYNN: Yeah.

- And Malachi, what makes Luka so good?

MALACHI FLYNN: I mean, he knows how to play. He big, can shoot and can pass it. I think he just reads the defense really well. He knows what play to make.

- When you're guarding him, it's impossible to take everything away. How do you approach guarding a guy like that?

MALACHI FLYNN: Yeah, you just got to make it difficult. Those guys are always going to be able to kind of get to what they want. You just got to take certain things away from them.

For, me if I'm on him, you just got to press up, make them go to the post, and then go from there. But I just got to take things away from him. You can't give them everything.

- When you say go from there [INAUDIBLE] the post, what does that mean? Does that mean, like, check out? Someone else come and get him, or--

MALACHI FLYNN: I mean, it depends what the coaches want to do on the game plan. Obviously don't want to just give everything out, but yeah, get it. Make him do that, and then we play from there.

- As a point guard, do you ever wish you were 6'7, 6'8, 230, 240?

MALACHI FLYNN: I say it all the time. It is what it is, though.

- In all seriousness, though, like, I mean, you're accustomed to having to figure out-- to manage--

MALACHI FLYNN: Yeah.

- --size in this league. What advantage would it be to be 6 or 8 inches taller and [INAUDIBLE]?

MALACHI FLYNN: I mean, it makes everything easy. You get easy layups. You get easy dunks.

You can pass over people. I mean, it obviously makes it a little easier. But they're a lot slower. So you know, I try to use my speed and counter out that.

- What have you made of [INAUDIBLE]?

MALACHI FLYNN: He's good. I mean, I knew him even from the bubble when I was in the G League. He was with the Magic.

And I've always thought he's a good player. I kind of keep my eyes on a lot of guys around the league. So when he came here, I knew he was a good player, and he's just showing everybody else that.

- In terms of the traps on Wednesday, it seemed like Kevin was passing out of those pretty easily. Do you just chalk that up to, like, it's a group that wasn't playing, that hasn't played together very much and, you know, wasn't exactly familiar with how to rotate? Or what can be improved upon for the traps that do come for Luka?

MALACHI FLYNN: I think we just all got to be on the same page. There was times where we weren't all connected. A lot of it is on us.

Obviously, Kevin Durant's a good player. He can pass. He kind of knows us, coming with us. But we'll fix things and make it tough on Luka.

- Staying with Luka for a second, I mean, his stat line was what it was at the end of the game last-- or the first time you guys faced him. But did you feel like for the first quarter, at least, you gave him some looks that he wasn't real comfortable with? Because it looked like most of his damage came later.

MALACHI FLYNN: Yeah, I think we can make it tough on him just the way we play defense. We got a lot of guys that can switch, a lot of long defenders, and then just kind of making it tough. We help on him and just make the next play. So I think we just do a good job on him.

- But then he's so damn smart, he adjusts, right?

MALACHI FLYNN: He does, for sure. And then you play. You make adjustments during the game on the fly. And I think Coach Nurse does a great job with that.

- Thanks, Malachi.

MALACHI FLYNN: Yes, sir.

- Thanks, Malachi.

MALACHI FLYNN: Yes, sir.