Game Quotes: Cavaliers vs. Celtics

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HEAD COACH BYRON SCOTT

(On tonight’s game): “That was a tough one to lose. I thought our guys really competed and played hard. Obviously, we didn’t make enough shots. Defensively, I thought we did some real good things. A couple of turnovers in the fourth quarter really hurt us. I loved the effort and as I told them after the game, we have to continue to play that hard if not harder.”

(On if playing from behind took up too much energy): “I don’t think we used all of our energy getting back because we got back in the second quarter, so from that part on, it was pretty much a game. It’s just a trend that we have to somehow kick. We cannot allow ourselves to be down 28-12, 16 points in the first quarter. We have to figure out a way to come out and have that same energy and that same intensity in the first quarter and carry it throughout the game.”

(On if he thought there was contact on Kyrie going to the basket at the end): “I thought Paul jumped straight up. What I did think is that once I saw Paul come over, I thought that Alonzo or somebody was wide open in the corner. The next step for Kyrie is once he gets there-sometimes it hard at 6-3, you have a 6-8 guy coming at you sometimes its hard to finish-sometimes the easiest play is just to find that open guy. Alonzo would have probably had a three attempt but it would have been a wide open look. I can’t fault the kid; being aggressive and trying to get to the basket at that particular time. That’s a good defensive team.”


KYRIE IRVING

(On the team’s final two offensive plays): “We had a good opportunity to tie the game up. It was costly, with the turnover that I had and we almost lost it again. Those two plays were key going down the stretch for us that I kind of messed up. On to the next game, but those last two plays were a great opportunity. It just didn’t fall our way.”

(On the importance of playing in close games): “It’s definitely important, going forward. We’ve had a couple of close fourth quarters during the season. Some of them we finished out and some we haven’t. It’s a learning experience for us going forward as we all continue to get better. I think it builds our chemistry going down the stretch and we have the upmost confidence to comeback.”

(On the team’s slow start tonight): “(Boston) did a great job of running their offense and were hitting a lot of their shots. They were hitting shots that we weren’t. We got down, but we weren’t worried though. We just had to pick it up on the defensive end and execute a little bit better on offense.”


TRISTAN THOMPSON

(On his performance tonight): “Whenever I come into the game, my role is pretty simple; just come in and give them a spark. I try to do that every game and get us extra possessions on the offensive end, rebound and block shots. That’s my role on the team and that’s what I’m here to do.”

(On why he believes he played effectively): “I’m just playing hard. Guys are coming right off the All-Star break either in shape or not and I want to come in and play hard and play active. It wasn’t enough to get the win, but we’ve got to bounce back and go play Linsanity.”

(On where his confidence is): “Whenever you get an injury as a rookie, you miss games and need to get your rhythm back. I feel good and I just need to keep working on the ankle and just keep playing hard.”


CELTICS HEAD COACH DOC RIVERS

(On the game): “Well, it was a win. I mean, that’s all it was for us. We’ll take the win. We needed the win. It’s a good way to end a losing streak and (start) off the second half of the season, with a win. We have to be better than that. It was awful, the turnovers (and) the sloppy play. The first quarter was beautiful. We put in what we worked on yesterday and it looked great (in the first quarter) then it went downhill from there.“

(On Celtics bench play): “I thought our bench, in the third quarter, saved us. Avery (Bradley), Chris Wilcox, Keyon Dooling didn’t play a lot of minutes, but I thought his minutes were huge. Mickael Pietrus, I just thought they saved us. Then our starters executed enough plays down the stretch to win the game for us, which was good.”

(On Kyrie Irving): “He’s terrific, I’ll tell you. His (ball) handling skills and his moxie in the fourth quarter, I don’t know if we’ve ever seen it for a rookie. It’s pretty amazing what he’s doing. And he’s a Dukie!”


PAUL PIERCE

(On the win): “We wanted to get off to a good start in the first game, after the All-Star break, on the road. We’re making it hard on ourselves…The positive thing about it is that we stuck with it. Down the stretch we played outstanding defense and got a couple stops and we were able to come out on top.”

(On the Celtics turnovers): “Sometimes we try to be too unselfish. (We were) a little sloppy with the ball. It’s something we really have to concentrate on, especially myself and (Rajon) Rondo.”

(On Avery Bradley): “He’s gaining more and more confidence with more and more playing time. He’s turning into a solid backup point guard to (Rajon) Rondo. He’s able to knock down shots. (He’s) penetrating and finding open guys.”


KEVIN GARNETT

(On gaining momentum as a team): “Momentum is important for us right now…We have to find a way to get it done. We’re playing every other day. This is going to be a grind right here. A true grind, physically. Mentally, we have to be into it and just be ready to hoop.”