Casey said the Lithuanian's presence on the court Friday was more ``for conditioning than anything else,'' and that he would play until he ``gets tired or gets in foul trouble, whichever comes first.''
Turns out it was neither, although Valanciunas, who played in a black protective sleeve that covered his leg from ankle to mid-thigh, was breathing heavily when he took a seat midway through the third quarter.
``Man, I was tired a little bit because that my third practice, I had just two practices before, but I'm getting back in shape. It's going to be all right,'' he said. ``I feel good, a little bit tired, but (Saturday) we have a day off, I'm going to rest, take care of my body.''
Valanciunas finished with three fouls.
Casey said fouling will be the biggest challenge he'll face this season as he adjusts to the NBA game.
``One thing I did tell him was to learn the officials' names, so when he talks to them he doesn't say, 'Hey ref,''' Casey said. ``Learn their name and get to know them. . . I found that officials want to help young guys, if you go and approach them the right way and ask them in the right way, they'll answer your question.''