Game Quotes: Cavaliers at Bobcats

(On tonight’s game): “I told the guys last night, after every game that we’ve won it’s been a pretty good game but we would come out flat the next game. Tonight we didn’t do that. We competed a lot better. We did some really good things but we didn’t play the defense that we played last night. Boris Diaw just took over the game the last few minutes.”

(On the team scrambling due to early foul trouble): “Ryan (Hollins) and J.J. (Hickson) got in foul trouble in the first half, so the only big we really had left was Luke (Harangody). We had to play Joey (Graham) at the four spot a little as well. We were scrambling a little bit through that first half just so we could go into the second half with our starters.”

(On the game’s final possession): “They did a real good job of pressuring us. That wasn’t a problem. We wanted to take it full court anyway, just so we could take some of the time off the clock. (Ramon Sessions) got into a little bit of trouble where we needed to call timeout. But again, the last-second shot that we got was a good look. You have to give them a lot of credit, it was a great defensive play.”

(On the final possession of tonight’s game): “We wanted to push the ball up and keep them off balanced. I think (Ramon Sessions) got into a little trouble and it was smart of him to call a timeout. But it happens like that and we had an ample amount of time at the end of the game. I thought (Anthony Parker) had a great look at it. It was just a great defensive play by them.”

(On the team’s play following an emotional win last night against Miami): “I thought we played well as a team. Everyone who played contributed and played as hard as they possibly could. We stayed in it the whole game and gave ourselves a chance. Coming off a high like last night and playing against a team that’s hungry for a playoff spot, we really battled them tooth and nail until the end. We gave ourselves a great shot to upset this team and go away with a victory, but they just came away with a great defensive play at the end.”

(On the Bobcats’ offense tonight): “They’ve got a lot of athletes on their team. I think in the second half we did a good job of making them shoot jumpers and they were hitting tough jumpers. When a team hits jumpers like that, what can you say? We contested all their shots in the second half and they were the better team tonight.”

(On spending time playing center): “I don’t really look at the position I play. Like I’ve been saying all season, whatever it takes to help my ballclub win, that’s what I’m going to do. If it takes me sacrificing my size and playing the five to help my team win, then that’s what I’m going to do.”

(On the team’s recent play): “Our play of late has been good. We’ve been in a lot of close games this season. We’ve been in some blowout games, but I think as long as we finish up the season strong we’ll be okay.”

(On tonight’s game) “We were short-handed so the guys had to step up and they did. I was so proud of them. We could have very easily tossed it in and not given ourselves a chance, but these guys are amazing right now. They just won’t give up, and I love these guys and what they’re putting out right now. ”

(On Kwame Brown): “He was dynamite in there. Every time he got it he just about put the ball in the hoop. He’s been very dominant.”

(On Boris Diaw’s play tonight): “He’s just awesome. He can do that every night; I just have to start getting him the ball more down there so he can go with it. We needed him to do that and he really came through.”

(On Dominic McGuire’s defense on the game’s final possession): “Dominic really came through. One thing he does better than anyone on our team is talk defensively and that last block was just awesome.”

(On the team’s attitude of late): “I just think that we’re really together as a team and we like each other. We’re playing hard together and the chemistry on this team is unbelievable right now. That’s what I have to attribute it to. On the court, defensively and offensively we’ve been hanging tough, but when a guy makes a good shot and he sees everyone on that team up, clapping and that kind of thing. You should have seen how they treated Dominic in the locker room after the game.”

(On Gerald Henderson’s play on defense): “That’s his forte right now. He’s hitting big shots, but we look for him to defend and I can put him on anybody. When we had Boris (Diaw) at point-forward he was guarding the point guard. Then I put him on Baron Davis knowing he was going to shut him down in the stretch and it worked like a charm. The play of the game was when he stopped (Ramon) Sessions on the sideline and he had nobody to pass it to. Everybody was in the passing lane, denying the ball and he had to call a timeout. That pretty much sealed it for us.”

(On Matt Carroll’s play off the bench): “I’m so proud of Matt because he’s coming in confident, he knows what he has to do offensively and he’s working hard defensively. He and Gerald (Henderson) have been giving me 20 points a game together and that’s dynamite when that can happen. I’m really happy for him because he and Gerald Henderson work harder than anyone on this team. I have to continue to play him and keep his confidence level up and he’s really going to help us down the stretch.”

(On tonight’s win): “It was a good win for us. All of these games down the stretch, no matter who we’re playing, are all big for us. The Pacers won tonight, so it just goes to show that we can’t really worry about what they’re doing. We just have to win our own games and see what happens.”

(On defending the opposing team’s point guard down the stretch): “I’ve done that a few times this year. Different guys will be in foul trouble, we’re dealing with injuries or it’s just a better matchup for us, so I’ll end up guarding (the point guard). It’s just like checking anyone else, you’ve just got to know a guy’s tendencies and know what he likes to do to and just lock in and try to get him to shoot a tough shot.”

(On the team’s chemistry right now): “We’re playing really well together. We had 33 assists tonight, which shows that we’re really moving the ball and looking for each other and playing very unselfish. I think that’s the key to our success, especially on a night when (Stephen Jackson) goes out and you can’t just give it to someone. We’ve played unselfish basketball, and if we play like that we feel like we have enough talented guys to knock down shots and make plays.”

(On whether the game plan was to score in the paint, where the team scored 54 points): “No, but I think it turned into the game plan. We wanted to get Jack (Stephen Jackson) open and get some looks for Gerald (Henderson), but they did a good job helping on them and I found myself wide open.”

(On guys stepping up in the absence of other players): “Guys are just doing their jobs and taking advantage of the opportunity. (Dante) Cunningham has been coming in and hitting shots and playing hard on the defensive end and we’re starting to look for him, as well as myself.”