Game Quotes: Cavaliers vs. Bobcats
(On tonight’s game): “I thought we played the game in spurts. We came out in the first quarter and we did a nice job. We moved the ball, we moved bodies, we let the offense work for us and we took very, very, very little shortcuts in the first quarter offensively. I thought the same thing defensively. I thought defensively we were communicating, we didn’t take any plays off and all five guys, for the most part defensively in the first quarter, played the game the right way. In the second quarter, it got a little tough for us but we still tried to play the game the right way. I thought where the game was lost and what I was most disappointed in was in the third quarter when our first unit was out there. When our first unit was on the floor in the third quarter, I thought offensively and defensively we took a lot of shortcuts. I’ve been pushing these guys and I’m going to keep pushing because they’re mentally tougher and physically tougher than what they think they are. Right now what they’ve experienced so far is nothing if we want to be a good or a great basketball team this year. We are going to have people hunting us. We are going to have people wanting to come at us on a night in and night out basis. No matter how we are feeling, whether we are feeling tired mentally or tired physically, we have got to come play on every possession and not be tired and take shortcuts.”
(On the bench play late in the game tonight): “I thought that at the end of the third quarter and into the fourth quarter when we had that second group out there or third group. I thought those guys played great basketball to end the game. It was tough when we couldn’t make a shot, but I thought the shots that we got, the ball movement that was done out there, the screens that were set, the cuts that were made, the communication we had defensively, the help we had defensively and the effort level we had defensively – the end of the third into the fourth quarter, for me, that was great basketball. I really enjoyed watching it.”
(On the play of Dion Waters tonight): “He’s a guy that can be a very, very good defender. He can be a high level defender. I think the first two times that his man went to the post, that one time he spun off, drove middle and scored a bucket. Second time, he went baseline and Dion had to slap down and get a foul. It was too easy. If we’re going to be a great team, and Dion wants to be a great two guard, he can’t let Gerald Henderson or anybody like that go down two times in a row or two out of three times, which is 66 percent of the time, score on him. He could play better than that and he could be ready to play sooner than that. I just wanted him to understand that, ‘you’re better than this. Not only that, you’re better than this when it comes to screen and rolls and pindowns.’ To his credit, he went out there and he tried even harder. I like to see that type of fight. If you see that type of fight, then you feel like you have something there.”
(On if the team was tired): “No, we have to go out there and play no matter what the circumstances are. At the end of the day, we just have to go out there and, tired or not, you have to play.”
(On if he felt tired): “I wasn’t tired. Sometimes you have those types of days, where it’s not going and you can’t get it going. I was sloppy today, but it happens.”
(On if he understands how hard it is to be as good as he thinks he can be): “At the end of the day, it’s doing it day in and day out. Even with practice. It’s doing the little things and you have to be consistent. He knows what he’s talking about. He wants the best out of me, so I don’t have any problem with it. I love the way he coaches me. When he takes me out, talks to me, puts me back (in). I love all that. I need that at the end of the day.”
(On if he feels like it’s information overload): “He expects a lot from us and especially myself. From the talks that we had in the summertime, I already know what he expects, so just coming into it, (the question is) “Are you willing to buy in?”, and I bought in. I continue to buy in and just continue to listen to him. He knows what’s best for me, so at the end of the day, you just have to listen to him, go out there and do what he asks.”
(On tonight’s game): “It felt good to be out there. We were all in a good rhythm that first quarter.”
(On what happened in the third quarter): “The Bobcats came out with a different tone and we didn’t match that tone appropriately. They hit us and we didn’t respond correctly. Granted, towards the end of the third, we did a lot of good things, as well as in the fourth quarter so we still got things to build on.”
(On if he’s experiencing any pressure): “Not really. I just feel like I have to go out there and play defense like coach wants me to, and offensively, just do what he wants, be in the right spots and just make it happen. No pressure, this is basketball. I just go out there and do what I know I can do.”
(On tonight’s game): “We’re trying to establish balanced play. They are (Cavs) are great to play against because they are disciplined defensively, so if you don’t do good things you can’t get good shots. Early in the game we couldn’t do it at all. I like that our offense got better as the game went on and we’re trying hard on defense. We have a long way to go but we’re getting better and our effort is good. To me, for preseason game number four, you have to be happy with it.”
(On point guards improving in preseason): “While it’s hard to judge and appreciate, tonight is the first time I’ve played them more than their regular minutes. They’re just now starting to get into some sort of rhythm. I think the thing that came out the most was our team competed and they competed. They play hard. So it was good for us and I thought we responded well and played with good effort.”
(On Cody Zeller): “He’s got the chance to be a terrific player. He’s smart, got size, athleticism, intelligence, good work ethic and he’s a quick learner. We’re fortunate to have him.”
- Cleveland shot 15-18 (.833) from the free-throw line and held an edge in fast break points 16-7.
- Kyrie Irving finished with a game-high tying 15 points, four rebounds, four assists, two steals and two blocks in 24 minutes.
- C.J. Miles scored a game-high tying 15 points, including shooting a perfect 6-6 (1.000) from the free-throw line in 22 minutes off the bench.
- Henry Sims recorded eight points on 4-6 (.667) shooting and tallied a team-high nine rebounds in 27 minutes in his first start of the preseason.
- Matthew Dellavedova dished out a game-high seven assists to go along with seven points in 24 minutes off the bench.