The Pelican Blog

Postgame report: From the Suns locker room

Phoenix Suns head coach Jeff Hornacek
On the win
“We finally got a group in there fourth quarter that played some defense. The guys helped each other, they fought over the screens. Those guys played the defense to help us win the game. I think we got Ish in there with Goran. With those two guys going up and down the court that was helpful. There was so much focus on Goran, but when Ish comes in, Goran can fill the lane. Ish is pushing the ball. We had a bunch of shooters out there with Markieff. You know, Markieff was a guy that took it strong to the hole and made some great moves. That type of intensity when they’re making plays is fun to watch.”

On Goran Dragic
“Well, he came up before the game and said, ‘I can go coach’ and basically Aaron came in and Aaron goes, ‘I can usually tell when he’s kind of fibbing about it. He goes, ‘I think he’s good.’ I decided to play him and he looked good out there. There was never a time during the game that I saw him limping or anything like that. Unfortunately, he had to play so many minutes to try and get the win. But, he was fantastic. There are times when he plays the whole third quarter and he comes out and says ‘I’m good, I’m good.’ And tonight he said the same thing. I said, ‘you weren’t coming out anyways.’ We knew he was a great player. The way he’s able to get around things. When they double him, he still gets around it, reverses his dribble. I think he’s in the point in his career where he’s seeing every possible defense and when they do something, he adjusts to it. When you go for 40, you’re pretty darn good.”

Phoenix Suns guard Goran Dragic
On tonight’s game
“We needed that game. Especially, if we want to be a playoff team, we need to beat those guys and the next one against Atlanta. We did not start good. The first two quarters they were shooting 56 percent from the floor. Our defense was not on the same page. We did better job, especially in the fourth quarter when we got that lead.”

On Hornacek declaring Goran’s performance All Star worthy
“I cannot say that about me. Other people can talk about that. I am just here to play basketball. I want to improve my game everyday. For me, it was already a good thing people were mentioning me, just to be an All Star. That was something for me. Of course I want to improve. Every season, be a better player than I can be.”

On MVP chants
“It was great. I never imagined they would cheer that for me. I heard that when I was here with Steve and they were cheering that for Steve. It is a great feeling especially with those last four free throws when the whole crowd stood up and cheered. It is something special in my career that I will remember my whole life. Great memories.”