Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Final Score: New Orleans 91, Oklahoma City 101

Hornets Post Game Quotes

Head Coach Monty Williams

The first half they scored 60 points and the second half they scored 41; we just had the tail of two halves the turnovers just hurt us in the second half. They take advantage of it, when you turn it over and they run right down your chest. Again I thought our guys were committed to fighting tonight they could have given up in the first half...Their aggression at the rim is something you dont see, especially from their guards. Their guards go to the rim but I thought our first half defense was poor.

On the first half:
I think its a combination of pressing and an experience of guys not being familiar with the situation and not being familiar with each other. Usually in a situation like this when youre trying to get back in the game and you get a rebound, you stop and look for your point guard and we had situations when we got a rebound and we tried to just take off against the defense and they knocked the ball out of our hands or we just throw the ball back to them. Those are situations where you look for your point guard and try to get a solid possession and in a loud gym like that its hard to scream to tell the guys to hold up. Take nothing away from them, I can sit here and say we beat ourselves but they beat us.

Hornets Guard Jarrett Jack

On tonights performance:
We have some guys that can handle the ball. I was just proud of the fight we had. Playing in this building isnt easy and coming back and staying in the ballgame like we did...They are just a really talented ball club. Ive gained a tremendous amount of experience the past two to three years playing together and growing together. They are able to be successful in these situations and hopefully with us we will be able to be the same way.

On playing without Eric Gordon:
Obviously we would like to have him in there but even if we had them in uniform that still doesnt say automatically all our problems will be cured. I mean we would love to have him in uniform? Of course. But I still think even if he was here, there are still 11,13,14 players who still have to get on the court and still need to find a way to be successful.

On Gustavo Ayon:
I thought he played well. Its not easy playing with all these experienced guys; Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins, Nick Collison. That is a very formidable front line they have over there. I thought he (Gustavo Ayon) and Greivis Vasquez did a tremendous job of getting us back in the ball game as well as getting us in the situation where we got an opportunity to win.

Hornets Guard Xavier Henry

What are your feelings on playing for the first time since last year?
It was fun but it was definitely shaking the cob webs off. Im just going to continue to get better.

What were the biggest differences tonight playing again?
It wasnt a big difference. It wasnt anything that I wasnt already used to. It was just I havent playing in so long, so I just had to get back out there and get used to it. It was fun while I was out there.

Do you feel like you get in a rhythm because you cant simulate a game in practice?
It is always fun to play in games and getting out there. There is nothing like it, so the more games I play the more comfortable and Ill learn more about the offense and all that with the guys, so Im just having fun.

Thunder Post Game Quotes

Head Coach Scott Brooks

Going into this game, we knew they were going to play scrappy basketball. Thats how theyve been playing. Unfortunately for them, they havent been rewarded for it, but we knew we were going to be in for a tough game and they proved it tonight. Thats how they play, thats their brand of basketball. We turned the ball over too many times, but I thought that a couple of players really stepped up. Serge (Ibaka) played really good tonight--scoring around the basket, making his jump shots. I thought DCs (Daequan Cook) three threes were pretty critical points of the game. We just had too many turnovers. We kept them in the game because they were scoring off our turnovers.

On the reason for turnovers:
"There are aggressive turnovers and there are sloppy turnovers, and were doing both of them. We dont work on not making it happen, but its just happening. We have to correct it. We have some time to do that. We controlled the board on offensive rebounds tonight--I think we had seven or eight. We have to knock that out.

On the movement of the basketball:
I think we had 13 (assists) in the first half. We were moving the basketball and it didnt look good at times because they play hard. Thats a very good team thats had some tough luck. Theyve lost a lot of two-point basketball games. Their inside guys are big and they make you really play good basketball. And they make you make the extra pass, and we did that tonight. Twenty-one assists--we can live with that.

Thunder Forward Kevin Durant

On getting to the free throw line 33 times as a team:
We made the extra pass and we had a lot of guys playing aggressive and attacking the rim. We put pressure on their defense and we were able to get some calls.

Surprised by New Orleans effort tonight?
No, these guys always play hard. Monty Williams is a great coach and they give 100 percent every possession so we knew it was going to be tough. They have Trevor Ariza back so you knew their defense was going to be a little bit better. We always try to play our game and worry about ourselves first and then move on from there.

On upcoming road trip:
It is going to be tough. Since Ive been here, we have handled being on the road pretty well so we have to stay focused and take it a game at a time and we will be fine."

Thunder Guard James Harden

On ball movement tonight:
We are much better when we have a lot of ball movement. We have so many guys that can create opportunities for others. When we move the ball, it becomes tough on defenses to stop us.

On defending Jarrett Jack:
He is a great player. He played well the whole game. He really controls the team. As the home team we had to lock in and make great defenses plays in the fourth quarter, and I think we did that as a collective unit.

On upcoming road trip:
I think it is a challenge that we can handle. We live for situations like this. We are going to take our toughness on the road and go out there and do what we do. I think it is going to be tough but I believe we can do it.

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