UTAH JAZZ

Stars Coach Discusses Taylor Hendricks, Brice Sensabaugh Growth

Nov 22, 2023, 3:34 PM | Updated: 3:37 pm

Utah Jazz forward Taylor Hendricks (Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)

(Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY –  Salt Lake City Stars head coach Steve Wojciechowski joined Jake and Ben on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone to discuss the growth of Utah Jazz rookies Taylor Hendricks and Brice Sensabaugh.

The two rookies have appeared in five games for the Stars who are the G League affiliate of the Jazz.

You can listen to the full interview with Wojciechowski in the player below.

How Has Taylor Hendricks Played With The Stars?

Wojciechowski was named the Stars head coach during the offseason and is now tasked with helping develop Hendricks and Sensabaugh into productive NBA contributors.

That starts with helping the rookies adapt their skills to the professional game.

“Taylor, throughout his career prior to this has been primarily a [power forward] and a [center], and so he’s seen the game with his back to the basket both on offense and defense,” Wojciechowski said. “He’s got to evolve to being kind of a 3-and-D type guy.”

Hendricks has had a productive start to his G League career averaging 13.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, and a team-high 2.0 blocks per game while shooting 42 percent from the floor and 35 percent from three.

While Hendricks is working to move his game away from the basket on offense, the Stars still want to see the Central Florida product impact the defense near the hoop.

“He can really protect the rim as a helpside defender,” Wojciechowski said. “He’s had multiple plays throughout our season where he’s really protected our rim and been the cornerstone of our defense off the ball.”

As Hendricks grows, the organization would like to see that defense translate into versatility all over the floor, and the coaching staff is confident he can get there.

“He’s going to be a really good player,” Wojciechowski added, “our goal is to help him get there sooner than later.”

Brice Sensabaugh Unlocks Playmaking

Perhaps the biggest surprise from the Jazz rookies so far with the Stars has been the playmaking from Sensabaugh. 

At Ohio State, the freshman wing averaged 1.2 assists and 2.0 turnovers per game, and was knocked during the pre-draft process for a perceived lack of passing ability.

In five appearances with the Stars, that hasn’t been a problem.

“I’ve been impressed with his ability to pass the ball and see passes and deliver passes and that’s something I didn’t know coming in,” Wojciechowski said.I covered him in college for ESPN last year and that’s not something he did and he can do that at a high level.”

In addition to his passing, Sensabaugh has maintained his knack as a scorer averaging 19.0 points and 7.2 rebounds per game while shooting 43 percent from the floor and 35 percent from three.

Now, the Stars want to see that same production on the other end of the court

The biggest learning curve for Brice is on the defensive end,” Wojciechowski noted. “That’s an area that we’ve really focused with him on and he’s made strides and we believe he’ll continue to make strides in that area.

The Stars are back in action Friday in Portland against the Rip City Remix. Games can be streamed on the G League YouTube page, and home games can be streamed on Jazz+.

Are you on Threads yet? Let’s connect, give us a follow @kslsports.

 

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Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

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Stars Coach Discusses Taylor Hendricks, Brice Sensabaugh Growth