The Pelican Blog

Postgame report: From the Spurs locker room

San Antonio Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich
On the Spurs defense at the start of the game
“We played good D, and we made shots at the same time. That’s a good combination. I think they had a tough night shooting. The first half they had a lot of tips that could have gone in and I think 10 or 13 offensive boards in the first half, or something like that. They did a good job on the boards, they just couldn't get anything to fall. We were shooting it very well so we were able to build a lead.”

On the amount of shots the Spurs blocked
“We got a lot of good deflections. We packed the floor real well. The guys did a good job of being active with their hands.”

On Marco Belinelli’s play
“Marco played well tonight. Everybody just notices his shots that he made but he is sharp. He makes good cuts. He can pass the basketball. He knows what's going on, on the court. He’s got a really high basketball I.Q.”

On keeping the Spurs focus at the end of the game
“The second team did a good job of coming in and playing smart, aggressive basketball. They didn't take anything for granted. The starters did a good job to start the third quarter. They didn't just go to sleep or anything like that. New Orleans is a hard working team. They just had a tough night shooting.”

On Tiago Splitter’s injury
“He might have been able to play probably. He would have played. He said he could probably do it, but there is no sense in pushing it. It’s a long season.”

Spurs forward Tim Duncan
On defense in the first half
“It was real active. Everyone was real active tonight. With good hands, we made it crowded for everybody. We got a lot of hands on balls. Danny (Green) did a great job in there. We had a lot of guys in there get some steals and turn them into offense. Just all in all, good team defense.”

On the performance of the Spurs second unit this season
"“They’ve proven that they bring that energy and they really change the pace of the game when they get in there. They’ve been great all season long. We’re excited about the second group. We sit there and we’re excited for them.”

On the challenges of blowout wins
“Our challenge is just having a fourth quarter rhythm more than anything. As the season goes on, we’re going to have to play in some close games coming down the stretch. Just being in rhythm and staying in shape for a longer stretch. It’s playing around 30 minutes rather than around 20 minutes. All in all, it’s basketball. We’ve been here before, we’ve done it before and it’s a long season. It’s great to be in this situation. It’s great to win games like this and great to have a lot of people on the floor.”

Spurs Guard Patty Mills
On the play of the Spurs bench this season
“It’s the energy coming off the bench that we need to provide in that second group. We talk about focusing on defense and then that being our staple. I think tonight we did a good job of getting hands in and disrupting them and making them pay for that.”

On regularly keeping teams below 40 percent shooting from the floor
“Pop (Gregg Popovich) has made that a focus for us. Like always, it’s defense first and then we’ll let the offense roll out from there. Our defensive energy and effort has got to be there every night. No matter how good you shoot or how bad you shoot the ball, if the defensive intensity is there, we will be all right. We will keep maintaining that.”

On the Spurs offensive rhythm
“I think we can still get better. Obviously, the last two games, we’ve done a good job of moving the ball and shooting uncontested shots. If we can keep that up, uncontested shots are what you want versus shooting against someone in your face. The better we are at penetrating, getting to the paint and finding open shooters, the better we are. We just have to knock them down.”