|Suns Head Coach Alvin Gentry|
Thoughts on the game...
I thought it was a well played game by both teams. Obviously, they made their plays at the end that got them over the hump. I thought we were much better as far as moving the basketball, we had 28 assists on 37 made baskets. That’s the way we have to try and play. We just didn’t make the plays down the stretch that gets you over the hump. We had two tips at it to put us up that obviously changes the game, or the way they approach the game at the end. We couldn’t quite get them in the basket. We had a couple of turnovers down the stretch that really hurt us. You have to give them credit, they made the plays down the stretch. We had opportunities to make them but didn’t quite get it in. I thought we played with much, much better effort than we did obviously our last game. I was happy because I thought we got good ball movement with 28 assists. We have to do a better job on the turnovers. We gave up 20 points on our turnovers and then we turned around and gave up 17 second chance points. You’re talking about 36 per cent of their offense was either off of our turnovers or second chance points, and that’s really too many. We’re just in a situation where we have to keep plugging away. The effort is there, we just have to get better in our execution.
On the looks down the stretch...
Well we got what we wanted, we just didn’t quite get it in into the basket. You can read into it whatever you want. I thought we wanted to take the ball to the basket to see if maybe nothing else we could get to the foul line. I liked what we did down there, obviously we just have to complete those plays and get it in the basket.
|Suns Forward Luis Scola|
Two tough losses, it seems like the frustration is pretty high?
It is. We have lost a lot of games that I think we should have won. It’s been hard, our record is not good. We just lost a really bad game in Detroit by 40. We needed this one, we were close but just couldn’t finish.
You guys missed some good shots at the end...
The game is like that, when things go wrong all the little things go to the other side. We need to change the dynamic, we need to change our attitude and we need to change our minds. We are in that kind of dynamic where everything goes wrong, and the ball bounces and goes to the other side. We just couldn’t get it to go, we missed four shots at the rim to get ahead on the scoreboard or tie the game. We just can’t get it going.
It seems that there is not really a go-to guy down the stretch, so with your experience do they turn to you?
He trusts me and I could have made those shots. One of them I had a really good look and the other one was a little bit more difficult which I think was a foul. I was sure it was a foul in the game but I truly don’t know. We had a lay-up with Shannon (Brown) and all those were good looks. Those are shots we should make 60 or 70 per cent of the time. We just need to start believing in ourselves and winning games.
|Suns Guard Shannon Brown|
You told Coach you were going to take it to the basket if you had the chance...
Yeah, I knew that we had a lot of time and there was no need to force a three. I felt like that I got a good look at it, but for whatever reason it just didn’t fall. It was a good play call by Alvin (Gentry) and the coaches and we executed it but it just didn’t work in our favor this time.
Did you think that you got bumped on that shot?
I mean it just didn’t go in. I really can’t call it that way it just didn’t go in for me. Next time I just need to take it stronger. We had a lot of opportunities with tips and moves with (Luis) Scola and we just need to go stronger. Make no excuses just go stronger and make it happen.
Are you worried about the team’s mindset?
No, I think we bounced back pretty well, going from losing by 40 points to a one possession game. That shows our character still and that we will never give up. We still have kinks to work out but we will definitely to work it out. We will figure it out, it is still early, we have to do it quick but we will figure it out.
|Raptors Head Coach Dwayne Casey|
Is Amir (Johnson) someone Jonas should be looking at and trying to emulate defensively?
Amir (Johnson) has had seven years in the league. It is not even fair to compare his defense with Jonas’. But Jonas (Valanciunas) has reach and size, so we have to keep teaching and nurturing him. It is a good learning experience for a young kid to go against some of those centres. He is going to have some tough nights. The only way for him to learn is to have him out in the fire.
Did you come in thinking you would use Mickael (Pietras) as much as you did?
I did not. I did not know where he was physically. He is a smart player. I am sure tonight was a lot of adrenaline. I am not sure what he will feel like tomorrow. The bounce back for him will be how he responds in the next couple of days. But he came in and gave us some juice.
What does it mean to finally get a win?
It is hard to explain. We could have won those games. As Kyle (Lowry) said we are in a four and a half foot hole. We are trying to stop digging. We do not want to go any deeper. Those games were all about fundamentals. They were all about little things like getting stops and rebounds at the right time. All those things come with experience and confidence.
The job Kyle (Lowry) and DeMar (DeRozan) did on the boards...
They did a hell of a job. It was huge. Kyle (Lowry) struggled offensively. But there are other ways you can help. I thought Andrea (Bargnani) struggled defensively but in the end his defense got us two big stops. There are other ways you can impact the game besides putting the ball in the hole.
|Raptors Guard Jose Calderon|
Thoughts on the play of Mickael Pietrus...
I was trying to help him out as much as possible. He was alright. When you haven’t played basketball for a while, you just need a few days to know what plays we are running. We have a couple of practices before the next game, so I will get him ready.
|Raptors Center Amir Johnson|
Thoughts on the teams’ defence down the stretch...
As you know, we’ve been struggling all season with those fourth quarter wins and stops are big. We were able to get the stops in the fourth so we just have to keep on doing that. A win is a win, and we will take it.
Thoughts on Andrea Bargnani’s defence at the end of the game...
It was huge. He was able to defend Scola (Luis) and grab the rebound at the same time. That was big. Andrea was definitely moving his feet and was able to get stops down the stretch.