Game Quotes: Cavaliers vs. Knicks


(On tonight’s game): “I feel a little bit better with the way we’ve played the last couple games, especially on the defensive end. Tonight, I thought we reaped the benefits of getting back to the basics and playing good, solid, hard-nosed defense against a good offensive basketball team. It’s the reason we won the game.”

(On Anderson Varejao): “He’s a stat sheet stuffer. That’s the one thing about Andy. He’s going to do a little bit of everything and tonight was no different. We had a talk after the Atlanta game where I thought he didn’t look like Andy in that game. In the last two games, he’s back to playing the way he’s capable of playing.”

(On Ryan Hollins): “His energy has been great. We just need him to rebound. That’s the biggest thing. The energy and the physical play have been good and hopefully he can continue to do that.”

(On many Cavs pitching in): “Everybody seemed to pitch in tonight. I think from the beginning of the game to the end of the game, our guys were really focusing on stopping the bleeding, especially here at home. I thought we came out with a very aggressive mindset from the start of the game to the finish. Our focus was there. Back to back or not, I thought everybody was really in tune to what we needed to do on the defensive end.”

(On if there was any carry over from playing better last night against Miami): “I think so. The one thing we talked about before the game last night was just getting back to playing the way we were capable of playing, especially on the defensive end. I thought we did that last night. Again, the turnovers cost us dearly against a team like Miami, but tonight, I thought the effort on the defensive end was just as good, if not better. I thought the energy was just as good, if not better, and I thought our focus was there for 48 minutes.”

(On the turnaround in the second quarter): “The thing that kept us in the game was our defense in the second quarter, because we couldn’t throw (the ball) in the ocean. We kept pretty close and then all of the sudden we started making shots and we were still getting stops. To go in at halftime at that particular point tied up, I think we all felt pretty good about the way we were playing because, offensively, we couldn’t throw the ball in the ocean. In the second half, we did a better job of making shots and moving the ball.”


(On Anderson Varejao’s play tonight): “He brings a toughness here and it’s contagious. It was contagious throughout the entire game, even through our bench. The bench is just as important as the starters, so it feels good to win.”

(On staying involved defensively and setting up his teammates): “I wasn’t really focused on my offense. I just wanted to help out my teammates. I only attempted six shots tonight and I have no problem doing that. I get my teammates involved and that’s the most important thing. Hopefully, we can have more games like this and whether I score the ball or not, I’m still happy.”


(On tonight’s win): “We’d lost four games straight and we knew we had to do something different in tonight’s game. We just tried to play hard. I’m always trying to help this team and trying to be active on defense and pushing everybody.”

(On getting a win on the second game of a back-to-back): “It’s great. That was our fourth game in six nights, so it’s great to take care of home court. We had lost four games straight and we knew that we had to stop that. We knew we had to play harder tonight and we did that and won the game.”


(On the teams’ energy after a back-to-back): “We knew that they played last night as well, but there are no excuses in the NBA. We have to bring that energy every night, even if we play back-to-back-to-back, which we will in the future. It was a really important game for us tonight.”

(On how the team tightened up on defense as the game progressed): “We just kept our rules. We’ve been emphasizing that stuff in practice; staying in our stance, having active hands. Andy did a great job playing the pick and roll. We played to our strengths and did what we needed to do defensively.”


(On the game): “The last two or three (games), we’ve had about 20 turnovers, and (combined) with our unique offense, we can’t generate a win that way. We have to find a way to score. They’re hustling. They’re playing hard defense. We held them to 91 (points), but we can’t stay in the 70’s.”

(On generating offense): “That’s what we’re trying to figure out, and as soon as we do, you’ll be the first to know…We’re working on spacing, keeping the ball moving, and that’s what we have to do. When you score so few points, every mistake is magnified, and everyone gets tight.”


(On what happened in the fourth quarter): “I can’t really put my finger on it right now. We have to just go back and look at it, and see what happened.”

(On comparing the previous game to tonight): “Last night we had guys that got going early (in the game), and tonight we seemed to wait for it to come to us. We just couldn’t figure it out tonight.”


(On the offense): “We get to the point when we don’t move the ball or have great spacing, and then our offense gets stagnant…It’s about the spacing. We have to have better spacing, that’s the first cure (to the problem)…We have to be willing to space the court and willing to move the ball. It’s something we have to all buy into.”

(On the second half): “We were up nine in the second quarter, and then the momentum shifted. We didn’t come out ready to play the third quarter. We have to have the same type of energy in the second half (as we do in the first).”


(On the technical foul): “That shouldn’t have been a technical foul. He’s (Anderson Varejao) on my back on every play and free throw. I’m just trying to get him off (my back) so he doesn’t get an offensive rebound…Hopefully the league looks at it and sees what really happened.”