That's What He Said

Celtics at Nets
Barclays Center, March 21, 2014/>

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Brad Stevens

Re: The game:

"We didn’t provide much resistance all night. I just don’t know if we ever provided one-on-one isolation resistance. And that’s what Brooklyn does well. They’re playing at a high level. This team is starting to really play. It’s a different team than the first three times we played them. We weren’t very good on the defensive end of the floor. When Avery Bradley started going off we just accepted trading baskets instead of really getting stops. We were just talking about it now in the coaches’ locker room. Paul Pierce at the four is the problem; it’s a problem for everybody. Brooklyn’s done a good job of adjusting. Their defense is very active, long. They get hands on balls. They turn that into points. The other guy that really has made an impression on me, who I’ve always thought highly of coming out of Duke, was Mason Plumlee. He rolls to the rim with force. He obviously can catch a ball at twelve-feet high and finish. We didn’t have an answer for some of that. Once we started pulling in and helping they started spreading out for threes."

Avery Bradley

Re: His mindset heading into the second quarter:

"Just go out there and play hard and try to win the game. That was my main focus."

Re: If he was surprised about getting open looks after he got hot:

"No, not really – I wasn’t surprised. The opportunities were there, and I was able to knock down shots. My teammates were giving me the ball. (Rajon) Rondo was putting me in good positions to be able to make plays, and like I said, I was able to make shots."

Re: The Celtics' play when he was on a roll:

"When you play with a veteran point guard, he keeps calling plays for you. The reason is (that) even if I don’t keep shooting, other people will be open because they start open playing me. That’s how we’ve been playing, and it started to happen. Players were kind of double teaming me, and I was able to move the ball and we were able to score down low. That was big for us, and like I said, that comes from a veteran point guard noticing it."


Jeff Green

Re: What broke down defensively:

"They got easy layups. Our defense wasn’t there tonight. If I knew (why), we would have been in the game."

Re: The difference between this Nets team and the one that Boston faced earlier this season:

"It’s getting close to playoff time. When it gets close to that time and you’re a playoff team, you amp it up a little bit. They turned it to another level."

Re: Avery Bradley's second quarter:

"He made shots. He was aggressive. (It’s) the same Avery as I know. When he has it going, he has it going."

Re: How the Nets were able to pull away:

"They got stops."

Re: Avery Bradley's performance sparking the rest of the team:

"You’ve got to follow his lead. As a team, we’ve got to have his back if he’s making shots, keeping us in the game. As a team, we’ve got to gather together and try to get defensive stops, and we didn’t do it."


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Jason Kidd

Re: What was working offensively for Brooklyn:

"Well, guys are touching the ball, everybody is touching the ball. We can draw up a play for Joe (Johnson), Deron (Williams) or Shaun (Livingston) it doesn’t mean that’s the one that’s going to take the shot. I thought everybody was touching the ball and that’s one of the nice things to see from the seat. I may draw up a play for Joe but Paul (Pierce) ends up with the shot. Guys are sharing the ball and trusting one another."

Re: Mason Plumlee's development:

"He’s growing each time he takes the floor, the more minutes he gets the better he gets. Being a rookie, he’s going to make some mistakes but the way he can finish around the rim with the guys that are passing the balls, it’s fun to watch. Mason is a big part of our success right now."

Re: Billy King's comments about the identity of the Nets:

"Well, it’s those guys in that locker room. As a group we trust each other from top to bottom. From Billy, from our owner, all the way down to our ball boys. Things didn’t start off the way we wanted but its marathon. It’s not who starts the race in first, it’s who finishes first. Guys understand what we are trying to do defensively and offensively and it’s fun to watch right now."

Re: How Brook Lopez would fit into the current system:

"I think he’s a guy that can put the ball in the basket. He commands probably a double team and the way the guys are shooting the ball right now, we probably would have to go small. I’m not afraid of going small. When you look at Paul and Brook out there, that gives us a stretch four but unfortunately Brook won’t be with us for the season, so we won’t be able to see that. Hopefully, he has a speedy recovery and he can be ready to go next season."

Re: Thinking about home court advantage in the playoffs:

"No, you need to win on the road at some point to win a championship. For us, it’s taking one game at a time and winning as many as possible and see who we open up in the first round against, on the road or at home. We will see what happens here."

Re: The Nets' style of play:

"It’s kind of different, you can say it’s 4 around 1 but we can post up our point guard Shaun or Deron or we can post-up Joe. We have guys that can knock down 3’s easily. The one thing that we do as a team that we need to get better at is rebounding the ball, but we’ll see. This is the team we have right now and this is the way we are going to play."


Paul Pierce

Re: The flow of Brooklyn's offense:

"Just the trust (between the players); you know, when we run our offense, move the ball, make the extra pass and play unselfishly and not care who gets all the credit or who gets all the shots, that’s what it looks like. Every game it makes us even more unpredictable because night in and night out, you don’t know who’s going to be our leading scorer when we share the ball like that. It makes us tough to beat."

Re: Playing well and building confidence:

"It does a lot, knowing that we can string together a good amount of games at home, play well and gather our confidence there. I’m the type that likes to really get the crowd involved. They really give you a lot of energy. It’s great that we’re playing well at home. We know we can win at home, but the real challenge is how well we can play on the road. This three-game road trip coming up is a huge challenge for us, knowing that each and every game is huge for us. That’s something that we’re going to have to take care of, because come playoff time we may be starting out on the road."

Re: Brooklyn's confidence since January 1:

"I think we’re clicking on all cylinders right now. I think we’re starting to reach our peak here at the right time at this point of the season with about a month left. Everybody is growing with confidence. The good thing is that in a week or two, whenever Kevin (Garnett) comes back, it’s going to make us that much deeper. So it’s good that we’re playing this way without a huge piece of this puzzle."

Re: Being a team that nobody wants to play in the playoffs:

"Right now, we’re definitely going to be the underdog. No one is really talking about us. We feel like we match up well with pretty much anyone in this league, especially in the Eastern Conference. You know, the chips fall where they may. Come playoff time, we feel like we can compete with the best of them. We feel like we can be one of the better teams in the East, if not come out of the East. I think we’re going to be able to surprise a couple teams."


Joe Johnson

Re: The Nets' confidence level at home:

"Yeah, we’ve been playing pretty good at home as a team. We got great ball movement offensively, guys really getting interior defense and making plays defensively. We’re gang rebounding and just helping each other out. It’s been beautiful to watch and beautiful to be a part of."

Re: His hot shooting at the end of this season:

"I think it’s not just me, we’ve got multiple guys who are playing at a high level with great shooting percentages and they’ve been helping this team get over the hump. You look at Mase (Plumlee), he’s been out of his mind of late and that’s something that we need. I’m just trying to do whatever I can. It’s a great feeling that we could be playing so late in the season. This is what you would want, this is an ideal situation for the team."


Shaun Livingston

Re: His team's performance:

"We had good ball movement, body movement, guys were hitting shots. We were getting to our spots and just executing."

Re: How the team has "bought into" the system:

"Right now we have a good system going, guys are trusting each other; we’re committed on both ends of the floor and we’re just trying to get better. Each day we want to get better and just develop more confidence in what we’re trying to accomplish as a team."

Re: If Brooklyn is confident playing at home:

"Yeah, we feel good about what we’re doing, holding down home court. We just want to continue to get better, game in and game out."

Re: Billy King saying that resigning him is a priority:

"It feels good to be wanted but my focus right now is on the season and the playoffs. I just want to help my team win games and just keep getting better on the court each game."

Re: The comfort level between his teammates:

"We developed it throughout the season obviously the first couple of months we were off but every game we play we feel like we’re getting better and developing more confidence and trust in each other. With repetition, like anything, you do things more and more, the more you feel comfortable with it."

Re: The Nets' identity:

"I think the best way I can put it is “we’re in the fight.” I think that was the game that turned everything around in Oklahoma City, we were all out there scrapping and fighting for each other and that’s really what it’s about."