Game Quotes: Cavaliers at Thunder

March 9, 2012
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HEAD COACH BYRON SCOTT

Opening statement: “Obviously that was a pretty good win, to beat a team this good in their building. Our guys came and competed. It was just like the last game against Denver. It was a good effort for 48 minutes and that’s all I’ve been asking of them, to do that, and we’ve gotten a couple of very good wins on the road.”

On being inconsistent this season: “I’ve just thought the last couple of weeks we haven’t played the way we know we’re capable of playing. We haven’t been competing and playing as hard as we’re capable of playing for 48 minutes. We’ve got back to playing like it the last couple of games. I think anytime you have a losing streak, you start to lose some confidence. But we have a young group of guys with some good veterans that said ‘Okay, six losses in a row, enough is enough, let’s go out on the road and get our act together like coach is talking about.’ When we compete and play hard we can play with anyone in the league and that’s how we feel.”

On finishing the game with three guards on the court: “Well, they (Oklahoma City) had a small group in there. They had KD (Kevin Durant) at the four-spot and I didn’t want AJ (Antawn Jamison) guarding him because he’s just too good. So I went small just like I did against Denver the other night where I put AJ at the five-spot and just surrounded him with shooters, surrounded really Kyrie with shooters. Just spread the floor and see what he can get us. It worked for the second game in a row and that lineup is probably our best lineup right now.”


KYRIE IRVING

On his game tonight: “Shots that I normally make were not falling, but that’s okay. I trusted my teammates down the stretch and they hit a lot of shots and made my job a lot easier.”

On tonight’s win: “It is a good win for us. I feel like we grew a lot closer in these last two games. I know a lot of people did not expect us to win these two games. We just came out here and competed, and we just need to take everything we have learned and apply it to other games, home and away.”


ANTAWN JAMISON

On the small lineup in the fourth quarter: “We knew that they like to play Durant at the four. And let’s be honest, I am too old to be chasing him around the court like that. Coach saw something in the small lineup the other night, and so we went with it in the fourth quarter. That is the great thing about this team, we can play small and go big as well.”

On winning back-to-back games: “It just shows what type of character we have. That is one thing I respect about these guys in the locker room. No matter what the situation is, and believe me it was bad. We still had positive practices, positive feedback, guys were still upbeat and we knew that in order to stop the losing streak, we had to win some tough games.”


THUNDER HEAD COACH SCOTT BROOKS

Opening statement: “I think you have to give Cleveland a lot of credit. They came in with a great game plan and executed it very well. We were a step slow. We turned it over and gave up too many offensive rebounds. I think that’s the game right there. They had 21 offensive rebounds and we had 17 turnovers. That led to some easy buckets for them.”

On not getting to the free throw line tonight: “We shot 24 three’s, which is not a good number when you only make six. One of our strengths is getting to the free throw line. We’re one of the best in the league and tonight we didn’t do that by shooting too many perimeter jump shots. Still, we have a lot to learn. When your perimeter shot isn’t falling, you have to continue to focus on getting points in the paint and points in the basket and tonight we probably settled too many times. It hasn’t happened a lot this year so you hope that’s just an aberration and we move on to the next game.”

On Cleveland’s offensive rebounds: “Well it was an issue early in the season and we’ve kind of fixed that problem but it crept up on us tonight. It’s not good enough basketball. Give them credit. They were going, and they kept going to the boards until we put a body on them. They had 21 offensive rebounds. We held them to a decent field goal percentage - 41%. Who knows what it would have been if we would have gotten those rebounds. That’s definitely a problem. I don’t know how many points they got out of the second chance points, but the turnovers and offensive rebounds really bothered us tonight.”

On moving forward: “We’re disappointed that we lost the game tonight, but there’s 29 good times in this league that are going to keep fighting to get wins. No one is going to give you a win. We were a little sluggish. We were a step slow. Very rarely has that happened. It’s one game, hopefully it doesn’t lead to two. More intensity and better focus tomorrow night, but we didn’t have it tonight.”


KEVIN DURANT

On Kyrie Irving: “He’s a point guard man. He had 12 assists. He got everyone involved. Luckily we have a game tomorrow. Just get rid of this one tonight and try to get a win tomorrow.”

On becoming more aggressive: “We just have to be more aggressive. I know I have to be more aggressive. I need to try and score the ball. Tonight I was trying to force the pass a little too much. We played good defense but missed shots – we just have to execute a little bit more and rebound the ball. We will be alright.”

On the Thunder protected the rim: “I think we protected the rim well. Serge was great as usual. We executed down the stretch. It is a loss for us but we just have to get past it.”


JAMES HARDEN

On the game: “We just didn’t’ get stops. They rebounded the ball and got some good shots…We didn’t rebound the ball or get stops. That would’ve been the turn of the game if we would have got stops down the stretch – and we didn’t.”