Postgame Quotes: Round 2, Game 1 vs Lakers

Thunder Quotes

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Los Angeles Lakers

5/14/2012

 

THUNDER HEAD COACH SCOTT BROOKS:

 

Opening Statement:

“We played a good defensive game and offensively with only four turnovers.  I thought a lot of guys stepped up tonight.  Nazr (Mohammed) came in and gave us solid minutes.  Nick (Collison) hit some timely shots.  Russell (Westbrook), Kevin (Durant) and James obviously played a very good game.  Our offense was good and we didn’t turn the ball over.  That’s been a problem most of the season and the last series we did a good job of taking care of that, and we did it again tonight.”

 

On the bench tonight and Kendrick Perkins:

“Our bench was good, and they’ve been good all year.  We’ve had guys step up throughout the season even when we had some injuries.  Guys came in and filled their role.  We did a really good job of defending.  They had 10 offensive rebounds in the first half, four on one possession and, in the second half, they only had three.  That was a big point of emphasis going into this game.  They’re a very good team.  They’re big. They’re strong and they crash the boards.  We wanted to make sure we put a body on them.  Perk (Kendrick Perkins) re-aggravated his hip and came back on the bench.  He was ready to play but we didn’t need him at that time.  He’ll get some treatments and we’ll see how he feels tomorrow.”

 

On the team’s performance tonight:

“With the turnovers we’ve had throughout the season, it’s good to see the last series and tonight that we only had four turnovers. That’s huge.  We’ve had four in the first six minutes of games sometimes.  We did a great job taking care of the basketball.  That’s one of the things that we talked about all year and we’ve really done a good job of that.  Kobe Bryant is one of the best players to ever, ever play this game and all we want to do is make him take some tough shots, and he can make those tough shots.  We did a good job on him, but it’s only one game.  We need to do the same thing come Wednesday night.”

 

On different guys stepping up offensively and defensively:

“I thought DC (Daequan Cook) had good minutes.  Naz came in and gave us good minutes when Perk re-aggravated his hip.  Bynum is one of the best bigs in basketball and we did a good job of not giving him the easy opportunities. But he had a good game.  Same thing with Gasol—we want to make sure that he doesn’t get a lot of easy shots, but he still had a good game.  I thought our bench did a really good job of taking care of the basketball, holding each other accountable on defense and rebounding the ball.”

 

Were you surprised about the domination of the game?:
“We play good basketball.  Like I told the guys, it’s one game.  It’s the first team to four that wins this series.  Regardless if we won by one or 20, it doesn’t have any impact on Wednesday night with the same energy.  We know that the Lakers are going to play much better.”

 

OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER GUARD THABO SEFOLOSHA:

 

Talk about your defense on Kobe tonight?

“It’s always tough going against a guy like that. You have to be really focused on staying in front of him.  Just making it tough on him.” 

 

Does this moving forward mean anything?

“It means we are up 1-0, but you know there is a lot more basketball to be played so you know we aren’t going to get overly excited.  But I think the first win is good to take, and we did what we were supposed to.  Now we got to get back to work and worry about game two now.” 

 

 

THUNDER GUARD RUSSELL WESTBROOK:

 

How you controlled the game tonight:

“I think it was a team effort. Everybody came out tonight and did a great job of distributing the ball, finding open guys, and getting easy shots. It was a good thing for us and we took care of the ball.”

 

Are you playing your best basketball of the year right now as a team?:

“I think we are doing a pretty good job. Like Kevin said, I think we could always play better. We’re just taking care of business and home court. For improvement, we are going to go back and watch tape to see what we can get better at.”

 

How do you feel this game 1 feels different from your previous game 1?:

“I just feel a little more experienced and a lot more comfortable. My team does a great job of getting me open, getting me to the spot and getting me affected. I’m just feeling a lot more comfortable in my fourth year now.”

 

THUNDER FORWARD KEVIN DURANT:

 

On playing so well after a long break:

“To be honest, I think we needed a few days off. With the way the season is going – we are almost playing every other day. So a few days did help. Coach (Brooks) did a great job of letting us go at it in practice by competing hard in practice. It got us ready. We came out tonight with a lot of energy. We have to do that the rest of the series. It’s going to be a tough series. I’m looking forward to it.”

 

Are you playing your best basketball of the year right now as a team?:

“To be honest, I think we could be better. We could do a lot of  things better  such as executing on the offensive end, helping each other out more on the defensive end and cutting down on our turnovers. We did a decent job tonight but we have to keep pressing. But, I don’t think we are the best right now. We can always get better and I think if we have that mindset, then we have a good chance. It’s all about growing and learning from our mistakes.”

 

Is the 2010 series against the Lakers fueling your development as a team?:

“That was two years ago. It was a great learning experience for us. Lakers are a tough team and they play us tough each time. We respect them a lot. I think the 2010 series, we made them respect us too. But at the same time, no matter who we play, we want to come out and play our game, which is defense first and playing together on the offensive end. At this point, it’s about us and how we can do well as a team. At the same time, we are always growing and always getting better.”

 

OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER GUARD DAEQUAN COOK:

 

Thoughts on tonight’s game:

“It was great.  It felt good to get back out there and play again.  It just felt good to get out there and play our game and in front of our fans.”

 

Thoughts on the 20 assists and four turnovers by the team tonight:

“That is the biggest thing right now, just sharing and moving the ball.  We know we can get the ball off the rebound and push it a bit.  It is just about getting other players involved and having confidence in our teammates.”

 

OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER GUARD JAMES HARDEN:

 

Thoughts on tonight’s game:

“We did a pretty good job on the defensive end and a great job of offensive rebounding.  That was one of the big keys.  We just tried to keep them off the boards.  It felt great to be back on the court after a long time off.”

 

 Thoughts on the 20 assists and four turnovers by the team tonight:

“Russell [Westbrook] and Kevin [Durant] did a great job of finding everyone and really controlling the ball.  That was a key to the game.

 

Thoughts on the big run to start the third quarter:

“The first group did a great job of executing and getting a couple easy baskets and Kevin [Durant] hit a couple threes.  Everyone helped out and did a great job, too.”

 







 

 

Lakers Quotes

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Los Angeles Lakers

5/14/2012

 

LAKERS HEAD COACH MIKE BROWN:

 

Opening Statement:

“I have to give Oklahoma City credit. I thought they did a terrific job attacking the way we tried to defend pick and rolls. We didn’t do a good job of staying in our coverage right throughout the course of the game. (Russell)Westbrook and (Kevin) Durant got some shots that weren’t contested as well as we wanted them to. Our guards and our bigs had a little trouble with our pick and roll coverage tonight as well as our weak side, and it just opened up a lot of things for those two guys over the course of the game, but especially when they went on the runs. Then they got aggressive and started going downhill, not necessarily making buckets all the time, but getting to the free throw line while they were going downhill. But, you give them credit because they were extremely physical tonight and they did a good job of staying up in us, forcing our offense to look stagnant at times because of the physicality, and that’s something that we’re going to have to combat in the next game.”

 

Was tonight’s game the result of fatigue?:

“We got beat tonight. You can say anything you want to about the seven-game series and us having a day, or whatever, but bottom line is this is the playoffs and we have to come to play. We didn’t. We got beat. It’s one game, so we have to bounce back to the next one.”

 

On Russell Westbrook’s performance?:

“I thought he was good. I thought he was a good pick and roll early on. I thought he was good in the post as the game went along. He had a great performance on both ends of the floor.”

 

What do you have to do from keeping Durant and Westbrook from getting those types of looks again?:

“We have to do a better job of trying to execute pick and roll coverage in the way that we had talked about. If we can, hopefully that will limit them some. If we don’t, and they’re able to turn the corner like they did tonight, it’s going to be a tough night for us.”

 

Were you surprised at how quickly this thing got out of hand?:

“A little bit. It got out of hand quickly with those guys making pull up jump shots. We didn’t get contests on it and like I said, we didn’t execute pick and roll coverage all the time. But at times, it’s one of the toughest shots in the game when you feel like you know you have somebody coming behind you and someone stepping out in front of you. I have to give those guys credit. It’s something that Durant does get and Westbrook has shown he is capable of. Both of those guys hit it tonight.”

 

LOS ANGELES LAKERS CENTER ANDREW BYNUM:

 

On if the Lakers left their energy in the past series:

“This team (Thunder) obviously had rest but they came out and hit shot after shot to get the lead. Sometimes, even when we would contest, they would still hit a bunch of shots.”

 

On what he and Pau Gasol talked about after the game:

“We were just talking about what we were going to do offensively as far getting us more involved in the high-low, because we have an advantage there and we have to get to it. They were being aggressive in trying to take away options. They obviously had seven days to study us, so they know our offense. We need to be aggressive.”

 

On if the series is going to be one-sided:

“We know it’s going to be back and forth. We need to make adjustments. We have a lot of tape to watch and we have to see exactly how they killed us and then try and correct it.”

On if the Thunder are ‘as good as advertised’:

“Obviously, they’re a good team but tonight they shot exceptionally well. We need to make defensive adjustments on them.”

 

LOS ANGELES LAKERS FORWARD METTA WORLD PEACE:

 

All the attention tonight is on the blowout, why were you guys so ineffective against this team?

“I mean, I thought we did ok. You know, it was a game, a game of adjustments and I thought we did ok. We played Denver at home also and they blew us out also. So we keep focusing.”

 

Ok is not going to do it with this team, how do you have to improve?

“I think that’s obvious. I think it’s obvious you have got to do better than ok. But we’ll be ok.”

 

Are you discouraged by how you played or do you just shake it off?

“No, not discouraged, not at all. We’ve been through, I mean just being here, I’ve been through more tough games. We should be ok.”

 

Did any of the crowd or booing affect you at all?

“I mean, I think the Oklahoma City fans do a good job of supporting their players and their team. Obviously, the city of Oklahoma has to be some of the best fans in the NBA. They took on a team that needed shelter and they were able to support their team and able to pay the players. So obviously they love basketball here.”

 

LOS ANGELES LAKERS GUARD KOBE BRYANT:

 

On containing Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant:

“We have to do a better job on screen and roll coverages. [The Thunder] were coming off screens, rising and getting great looks at the basket, so we have to do a much better job on that.”

 

On starting 7-for-8 and then falling behind:

“[The Thunder] came in extremely well prepared and moved their defense around extremely well. [The Thunder] set great screens and found a great rhythm.”