Heat at Celtics
TD Garden, March 18, 2013
Re: How it feels knowing that Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo weren't playing but Boston still competed:
"Well, the same feeling I would have if we had KG and Rondo honestly. I believed we were going to win the game before the game. I thought we were going to win the game during the game. And I thought we should of won the game. You know, I give them credit, they made some spectacular plays. One of them was absolutely a goal tend that Jeff drive, it definitely hit the board first. And that has to be called. But other than that, they made, we had I think four, counting that one, at the basket. And they made plays on all of them. So you have to give them a lot of credit. They made defensive plays."
Re: Jeff Green's night:
"Jeff was terrific. I thought he played well the entire night. He attacked. You know what I loved about Jeff, I thought the first two minutes of the game, three minutes of the game, he was struggling. He missed a free throw, missed a couple of shots. And you know the old Jeff may have gone away. He actually just kept going and kept going, and that’s all we talked about. And once he realized he had an advantage, he took advantage. And that was great. That’s why the one play we drew up gave him a quick iso, he got all the way to the basket. Shane Battier made a hell of a play. You’ve got to give him credit there but we liked where he was at."
Re: The final possession:
"Paul came off, it was for Paul first. I thought Brandon made a terrific read. I want my guys to be aggressive. He grabbed it, he could of gone for the dribble. But honestly, I don’t think you’re going to get a much better shot than your big at the rim at the basket. I’ll take all those shots. I think Courtney had one right at the rim too. So we missed some layups down the stretch. But I was still more, I was happy with our offense overall. The turnovers killed us. I think they had 24 points, that’s almost a quarter of their points. I just didn’t like the defensive mistakes that could have been prevented."
Re: Needing a blow in the fourth quarter:
"Yeah, I was tired. I was guarding one of the best players on the floor. You know, I played basically the whole game. But I mean, we still had a chance to win. Those couple minutes that I was out we were up probably eight at the time, so we still were in the lead, so we just got to figure out a way to win at the end."
Re: Hearing the Garden crowd chanting his name:
"Yeah, I heard it. It’s a good feeling, but you just got to stay in the game, stay focused. Think about the next play."
Re: When KG returns, how good they will be:
"It was the best team in the league and we took them to their breaking point. We just got to, when Kevin comes back, continue to play like we did today. With the addition of him, I think we will be more lethal. So as long as we continue to attack, get stops, we’ll be in pretty good shape."
Re: Any positives to take away from the loss:
"There's always positives from every game. You gotta look at negative things when you play against the best team in the NBA right now. It's always gonna come down to the little things, and those things really add up at the end of the day when you have a 2 point loss."
Re: Jeff Green's performance:
"He's capable of whatever when he puts his mind to it. You know, he's showed flashes of what he can do throughout the season when he's focused, when he's locked in, and that was an example of it today. We want him to stay aggressive, he had to match up most of the night at the 4 position versus whoever was guarding him, and he was aggressive the whole night and that’s what we needed from him... He really played a smart ball game cause he didn’t force it. He took advantage of that opportunity. We said he was gonna have the matchup tonight at the 4 position, he’s playing the 4 a lot with the quick 4 versus a lot of those guys aren’t used to guarding guys like Jeff. So just tell him to keep playing smart, keep playing aggressive. We need that from him."
Re: The confidence Boston has matching up against Miami down the road:
"I mean, we feel like we match up with them, top to bottom. But you know, like I said, no moral victories. Even though it was a close game, we beat them here, the playoffs is a different game."
Re: The game:
"We had to earn that one. No question about it. We just have to keep on grinding away, keep our heads in there, compete. They jumped all over us. They were playing at a different speed than us in the first quarter and a half and yes, give them credit. They really got into us defensively and made it tough for us to get into our offense. They were just coming at us so fast – moving us around and scoring on us at ease before you could even blink. We just hung in there, and we tried to find different ways to win. We didn’t panic, but we did own it, and we had to earn it."
Re: The difference between their normal style of play and this game's:
"They were getting us to speed up, force us into some mistakes, and get us into our offense a few steps up. But we settled in and had much better execution in the second half. LeBron bailed us out with some great plays at the end but defensively we picked it up. The fourth quarter defense was more like our normal defense – really active. Dwayne had three big rebounds going down the stretch. Shane, sitting out most of the fourth, came in on that last possession to get that block. Then obviously that last play at the end – that’s just vintage Shane Batter. But we certainly had to earn this one."
Re: Jeff Green's performance:
"He had a tremendous game. He played great, he was aggressive, he was making tough plays, and he was putting a lot of pressure on our defense. Give him credit, and the guys’s been through a lot. Even as competitors you don’t want to see anybody out like that through some of the ailments he’s been through. I know it had been a tough year for him last year, I’m just glad he had a big night on one of our wins."
Re: Continuing their win streak in Boston:
"It means a lot to what we’re trying to build. A tough-minded team on the road, it’s a hostile environment. We grew again tonight and that’s big for our team."
Re: The "Miami Heat" discussion before the fourth quarter:
"We just have to continue to stick together. We’re a veteran ball club and we all want to win. We got a little emotional, a little fired up on the bench. But we’re all out there trying to do the thing that’s right for the team, and it was everybody together in the fourth quarter."
Re: Adjusting to the speed of Boston's game:
"Yeah they brought a lot of speed to the game. They’ve got a lot of it now, so we had to adjust to that and once we adjusted to it for the most part we were able to contain it a little bit. But they played a great game."
Re: Seeming like the Heat set up close games for fun:
"No, we’re not doing that. I mean I think no matter what with this team – no matter if we’re up 17 or down 17 we’re confident that we can come back in the ball game. That’s a big difference when you’re out there playing – when you know, 'All we’ve gotta do is this, all we’ve gotta do is that' – we can get our way back in the team. It’s just a team that’s familiar with each other, that’s comfortable playing together, comfortable talking to each other and making each other better throughout the game."
Re: The Heat playing truly united:
"No doubt. Other guys don’t get enough credit and they deserve it. They step up big and we don’t win without them. When they’re not shooting the ball well, when they’re struggling a lot of people like to point that out, but when they’re playing well – that’s the reason we’re on this winning streak – because of guys like Shane, Mario – Bird Man has been unbelievable for us. We don’t win this game without Mario’s performance, without Shane’s defense. So even though LeBron had an unbelievable night, we don’t win without our bench."
Re: Jeff Green's career night:
"He was locked in. I think he’s a very good player. I think tonight... He was on fire. He just came out very aggressive and they had to have somebody score a lot of points. He had his opportunities. We withstood it though – we withstood what he did and what they did and we worked our way back into this ball game to make it a game. Like I said before the game, when we play Boston, it’s going to be a close game at the end. Somebody’s going to make a play at the end, either way, to win the game."