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Layne Murdoch Jr.

1/26 Arbella Quote Worthy: Celtics vs. Pelicans

Read what the players and coaches had to say following Boston's 123-108 defeat to New Orleans.

Click on a player to reveal quotes from their postgame press conference.

BRAD STEVENS

RE: On the process of deciding to do a Kobe Bryant tribute to start the game:

“Alvin walked into my office and said, ‘Let’s do this.’ And I said, ‘Sounds great.’”

RE: On Jayson Tatum and Enes Kanter:

“Jayson is pretty close to being back. I think he will go through some more stuff tomorrow and be day-to-day. Enes will not be at Miami and he is questionable as of now for the Golden State game.”
GORDON HAYWARD

RE: On what the initial shock was like when the news about Kobe Bryant broke before the game today:

“I didn’t know that it was real to be honest. I definitely looked it up for myself. I was heartbroken. Heartbroken for his family. Being a father, my stomach is hurting. It still is hurting. There’s nothing that you can say to make it better but certainly I’m praying for him and his family. It’s just so tragic. It was tough today. It was definitely tough. I’ve had a relationship with him and he’s been nice enough to take his time and show me things. He’d text me, the messages he sent me. It was tough.”

RE: On how difficult it was to play a game tonight, so soon after the news broke:

“My stomach is still hurting. It was hard to play today. Mentally, there were a lot of guys that weren’t themselves with the news and I don’t blame them. It’s very, very tough.”
JAYLEN BROWN

RE: On what was going through his head during the pregame ceremony and when both teams took the 24 second call to start off the game:

“It’s tough. Kobe is part of the game so much and to hear the news of him and his daughter. I woke up from a nap today and I don’t think I’ll ever forget where I was at and what time it was and things like that because it was the last thing you wanted or expected to hear. It’s tough.”

RE: On mimicking Kobe’s free throw routine that he still uses to this day:

“To be honest I stole his free throw routine. One, two, three, spin. Yeah I was on his free throw routine. I’m kind of lost for words to be honest with you. Part of how I picked up to play basketball was because of him. He inspired so much and it’s so tough that I never got to shake his hand. I was looking forward to that day. I never got to meet Kobe Bryant or go to play against him. I am extremely inspired and honored to be able to play and celebrate his name.”
ALVIN GENTRY

RE: On how difficult it was for both teams to be out there tonight:

“I think it’s extremely hard. You know, you just realize that what we do is just not very important really. When you think in the grand scheme of things in life...you know, we had a guy that’s lost his life along with his daughter that meant the world to everybody really. Everybody here he’s affected in some way, and it’s just really tough. You would normally be really excited about a win like this. You know, you beat a really good basketball team and a team that beat you by 35 a week and a half ago. And it’s just not there, really. To be honest with you, it’s just not there. I don’t know how you’re supposed to handle it. I mean obviously we’re happy we won the game, but the first thing I thought about when we walked through the door was him and his [daughter]. Then you think about Vanessa (Bryant) what she must be going through. It’s just a real, real hard day for everybody I think. Seeing guys on the scene and social media things...it’s affecting everybody...not just this country, but around the world really.”

RE: On his assessment of Zion Williamson’s adaptation three games into his NBA career:

“I think he’s fine. There’s obviously a huge area of improvement that’s going to be made. You know, he’s played three NBA games now, and what he’s done he’s just done on raw talent really. He’ll get the feel of what we’re trying to do, and playing in a certain amount of space and how we can give him the ball and things like that. He’s going to be a welcome addition. He’s going to be a guy that we can finish the game with.”
ZION WILLIAMSON

RE: On being able to be on the floor to close the game:

“I was very anxious, but it was tough watching from the sideline in the fourth quarter in the last two games. But it was good to finally get out there and it was good to get my first win.”

RE: On what Kobe Bryant meant to him:

“Kobe meant a lot to me growing up. I had both jerseys, 8 and 24, growing up. I feel like I studied his footwork game because I respected his. I think its top two of all time. But, I mean, its tough man. I was on the way to arena when I got the news. I just send my prayers to his family. You just hate to see what happened to him and his daughter. You just hope the world will give the Bryant family all the support they need.”

RE: On how it felt playing under the circumstances:

“At first it was a little difficult. I couldn’t focus at first. One of the greatest taken away from us too soon, but his impact will forever be a part of this game. He’s a legend. Legends never die, so he will forever be remembered.”
JRUE HOLIDAY

RE: On hearing the news about Kobe Bryant and the impact it had on today:

“It was a hard day. I heard as I was walking into the arena. Again, from me being from LA, growing up and watching him. Being a Lakers fan growing up. Just what he did for the culture of basketball for so many years, and not only that, but for the world. It’s a sad day. I guess in my heart, Kobe would want us to beat the Celtics, so that was a good win. Man, just so much prayer to him and his family...just that they find peace in the situation. I couldn’t imagine.”

RE: On Zion Williamson getting more minutes and finishing the game:

“He’s contributing. He’s playing his game. You could tell, especially tonight, that he was a lot more comfortable, which was great. Being there in crunch time, I wish he could have done that from game one. Really to have that experience. Everything is a process. For him, hopefully he feels like he is doing what he wants to do and going where he wants to go, and he is fitting well into the rotations. Believe me, I know it is hard to play with minute restrictions. So, for him to feel comfortable...he looks pretty good.“
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