Will Dawkins said he has some familiarity with the DMV from players and staff he interacted with in Oklahoma City, but the Washington Wizards' new general manager told Team 980 he is ready to jump into the city to build something to give fans a sense of pride about the Wizards.
"This is such a great basketball city," Dawkins told Craig Hoffman and Chris Russell. "I'm excited to get rolling. We're not sure what we're getting ourselves into, we gotta sit down, we gotta learn and figure it out, but we will charter a plan to make sure that we're giving you guys the product on the floor but also in the community that you're proud of."
Dawkins, who worked with new team president Michael Winger with the Thunder, has experience building from the ground up. But, Russell asked, is that the only way he sees a team can build?
"I think everything's different. And I will push back a little bit in saying that's the only way we did it in Oklahoma City," Dawkins said. "Because we were very fortunate and blessed to get a player in Kevin Durant, a generational player right away. You stack Russell Westbrook and James Harden right on top of that, we were very fortunate it took off very, very quickly.
"But we were also very good for a very long time and were able to sustain success and make trades and make that a really, really long run, a decade of pretty much sustained high-level play where we're really competing. So you learn through that how to tweak, how to add, how to find a All-Star player and turn him into this, add when you just have one star, so I've been able to see and do a lot."
The new Wizards GM added that "there are a lot of ways to skin the cat" and pointed to his track record, but the plan for Washington going forward will be made in collaboration with Winger and Travis Schlenk.
"The goal will be to have sustained success that the fans are proud of that will give us a shot at our ultimate goal, not just once, but repeatedly, that will be the goal," Dawkins told Team 980. "And however long that takes, I don't know, but we'll get to it."
When asked about the decision the Wizards face with what to do about Bradley Beal, Dawkins said, "There's no decision to be made" because Beal is under contract.
"He's a Wizard, he's a star player, we're happy to have him," Dawkins told Team 980. "It's appealing in the job walking in [knowing] you have a player like Brad Beal."
Dawkins also spoke about his basketball path from South Carolina to Emerson College to the Seattle SuperSonics to Oklahoma City. Listen to the full conversation on the player above.
Follow @BenKrimmel for more.