Post-Game Quotes: Thunder vs Mavericks

Playoffs: Game 1 Round 1

Thunder Quotes

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Dallas Mavericks





Opening Statement:

“That was obviously a good win for us.  I thought a lot of the things did not go well for us early, but we stuck together.  That’s what this team always does and that did not surprise me.  We got down a few times by seven, eight or nine points, even with three minutes to go we were down seven, and we still just fought back.  Every possession was important.  At that time we had played nearly perfect basketball on both ends of the floor.  It was just one game.  That’s what playoff basketball is—you have to take the game, win or lose, and move on to the next one and focus all your energy.  Serge (Ibaka) was a big part of this win.  His ability to catch around the basket and finish was huge.  He makes his free throws.  Russell (Westbrook) had us in the game when we had nothing going offensively.  His mid-range game was good, but I thought everybody did their job.  Perk (Kendrick Perkins) —his stat line does not look good, but his defense on Dirk (Nowitzki) the last three or four possessions was about as good as anybody can guard that guy.”


On the last sequence of the game:

“One of the things about Kevin, he’s always improving.  He’s a developing player and he believes in what we do and he continues to be a tough critic on himself, with a little bit of help from me.  I like the fact that he drove to the basket to an area that he can make that shot.  It was a great shot.  It was contested, but great players make tough shots.  That’s what he has to do.  There are times that he has a tendency to take a three that is not needed, but I like the fact that he drove to the basket and go into a place that he can pull up above the defender.  He’s an athletic, smooth shooter and he did that tonight.  I thought also if the shot wasn’t going in, Serge had a perfect position for the tip.”


On the battle for every possession:

“You look at Dallas’ team, and you can say that’s a two-seven matchup, but everyone knows they’re much better than a seven.  They’ve fought some injuries and came back, but now they’re playing good basketball.  It’s going to be a tough series every game.  Game 2 is going to be tougher, and we understand that.  That’s how they play and that’s how we play.  They play very good basketball and we do too.  We knew going into this game that there were going to be a lot of plays made on both ends to get the win.  We had some really bad turnovers.  Those first half turnovers led to an easy bucket for them.  We have to continue to do a better job in taking care of the basketball. They’re one of the best teams at running the clock down to find a great shot and they don’t turn the ball over a lot.”




On Durant’s shot:

“It was a great shot.  It saved the game for us.  I don’t think we played well.  We had some good spurts throughout the game but overall we didn’t play our game, but he saved us at the end.”


On your performance:

 “You get into a groove.  I just went out there and tried not to do too much and whenever I hit my first shot I took advantage of it and just tried to play my game.”


On thoughts heading into Game 2:

“Kevin made a great shot but we still have to play better as a team.  It is the playoffs, guys are going to adjust.  We missed a lot of easy shots.  We have to get ready for Game 2.”




What you saw on the last play?

“Coach drew up for me to come off the screen and get it close to the baseline. We knew they were going to switch it up... I just didn’t want to settle for a three so I tried to take it closer and shoot a shot. It got enough arc on it to go in.”


Thoughts on the game?


“I tried to help my teammates as much as possible. We have a tough cover with those guys. We just tried to contest shots at the rim. Serge is going to do it but if I help out as well that just adds another dimension to our team. I was lucky to get my hands on a few basketballs. We just played hard. We made mistakes but it’s going to happen throughout the game.”




On the final play:

“Well my job was easy- just find a way to get the ball to Kevin and that’s what I did.”




On the defense:

“I think it’s team defense. I think we have been preaching it all season long. Tonight in the fourth quarter we turned it up a notch. That’s what playoffs is all about and hopefully we can keep it going.”





Mavericks Quotes

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Dallas Mavericks





On the last shot:

“Well, Nowitzki made a great play to get fouled. It was clearly a foul, so he made a couple of free throws. Then at the end, we wanted Marion guarding him (Durant), but he made a great shot. The only other thing we could have done was double team him and get the ball out of his hands, and we should have done that, obviously. So that’s on me. I take responsibility for that. I think the important thing we need to realize is that our guys compete at an extremely high level and really worked hard to get a seven-point lead with 2:20 to go (in the game). We made mistakes you can’t make down the stretch. The last shot always gets magnified. But we made some uncharacteristic mistakes that we’re not going to make anymore in the series. We can’t.


On Jason Terry:

“They were playing him hard. That’s my job to get him more looks when he’s going good. I’ll take the responsibility for that.




On Thunder winning in the last seconds:

“It’s unfortunate for us that we played great basketball and gave ourselves a chance to win. We had a nice lead and we just have to close out games. When you’re playing on somebody else’s home court, holding a lead like that, we just have to close out games – plain and simple.”


Feelings of the loss:

“It’s frustrating because I play to win. I’m not playing to lose, and every time we do lose, I expect us to win. This game was not any different than any other game. We’ll get another opportunity on Monday to really bounce back and tie this series up.”




On guarding Kevin Durant as Durant made the game winning shot:

“It was great defense. I don’t even think he could see the rim. There was no way he could see the rim. He just threw that (ball) up and it rolled in. Like I said, we should have never even been that position, but you got to give him credit because he hit a hell of a shot.”


On Marion getting into an offensive rhythm:

“I’m ready. This is the postseason. Give me the opportunity and I’ll always make things happen.”




On the Thunder’s final possession:

“[Last year] we came up with those bounces and we were the ones on top. Too many times in close games, I think we have a losing record in those games. It’s tough. It’s definitely as tough a loss as you can get.”


On coming back in the series:

“If any team can recover from it, it’s an experienced one and we have a lot of older guys who have been through a lot. It’s a big game for us on Monday and hopefully we play a more all-around game.”