2/1 Arbella Quote Worthy: 76ers vs. Celtics
Click on a player to reveal quotes from their postgame press conference.
RE: Energy early in the game:
“Yeah, you know we talked a lot – I mean, if the ball gets into the operating area too deep against these guys it’s hard because they’re so big and strong, and we saw a few examples of that tonight, specifically with (Ben) Simmons getting us on some actions. But I thought our guys really tried to pressure as well as they could and push things out. And we were also fortunate; I thought the start of the third quarter neither team was playing very well and we were just fortunate to hit a few more shots at that moment than they did. They got some open ones, so, that’s usually when you look back – there’s usually a little bit of two tales there.”
RE: Jaylen Brown:
“He’s been really good. I said the other day, you know, we’ve talked all along, it’s more important all along to be playing like an all-star than to be named one. And nobody exemplifies that better. He’s done a great job. I think that he played really well the other night, but tonight he was – he was really good. Very aggressive, very good at picking his spots. But he came out – even on that first possession you knew he was going to be – you know – ready to roll.”
RE: Second unit:
“They’ve been good for – for the last few games. Certainly, on that road trip, you know, that Semi (Ojeleye)/Grant (Williams) 4/5 is not traditional, but it is very strong. It’s hard to post because they are so strong. And they can both move their feet and guard. So you’re able to switch a lot with that group and not lose a whole lot from a perimeter defense standpoint. And then, you know, we’re a little bit bigger around them with our wings; we’ve got a lot of versatility. So that’s been good, and just keep playing within what they do best. But that’s been a good combination the last couple weeks.”
RE: How did you limit Joel Embiid and win the Center matchup?
“That’s a good question; I think – you know, he’s not going to do that. He’s not going to have that kind of night very often. He’s an unreal player. And obviously we have the utmost respect for him. And I thought (Daniel) Theis played as hard as he could, but you can play as hard as you can against that guy sometimes and the ball goes in and there’s not much you can do about it from a physical standpoint. We’re just trying to make it as hard as possible, but probably more one of those nights from him than – than anything special that we did.”
RE: Was this one of the bigger wins of the season?
“I don’t think – I don’t know. I think there were some good moments, obviously. I felt we – there were a lot of moments to get better from and again, obviously they missed some shots, start of the third; it would’ve gotten a bit more dicey if a couple of those would’ve gone in. So, I’m not ranking them; we’re moving on one game and a time and they’re all worth one. So, we’ll move onto Atlanta and try to play well there. It’ll be tough.”
RE: You did have it going tonight; what was behind it?
“Trying to be aggressive. Trying to get a win. I haven’t played as well against Philly as I would have liked the first three times so tonight I wanted to make sure I left my imprint on the game.”
RE: Your team finding ways to be successful with guys missing:
“That is what a season is; ups and downs. We just have to continue to find ways to win and get better in different avenues. We have had some injuries and had some people out but we are still on the right track. Heading into all-star break we want to ramp it up a little bit and start cleaning up a bunch of habits inching towards the playoffs.”
RE: How hard have you worked to improve your ball handling skills?
“Just trying to get better out there. I have been working on my game since I came into the league continuing to put the time in and make sacrifices whatever it takes. I am going to continue to get better. That it is, it, man the proof is in the work. You just keep working and keep getting better. Just keep raising my level.”
RE: How are you feeling; looks like you took another shot there?
“Another one exactly. I am sore so we will see in the morning how I am feeling. It is sore so hopefully I can play. But like I said we will just have to reevaluate tomorrow.”
RE: Success against the Sixers tonight:
“It felt good. The Sixers are a really good team and they have done a really good job preparing for us and coming out and executing against us. Tonight we just wanted to go out and do what we do and that is to play the game of basketball the right way. To just play together and it felt good. We have seen when we actually come out and execute the game plan and do what we are supposed to do the outcome the majority of the time for us. But it was good to play against Al (Horford), it was good to see Al back here, it was good to finally see Al out there on the court again. We missed Al here. Al is loved here but it was good.”
RE: What specifically has gone wrong the last couple of nights, leading to Joel Embiid’s struggles?
“You know, I don’t really know. I give credit tonight to Boston’s physicality. We didn’t – he didn’t start the game well with turnovers. I think we had seven in the first period, he had four of those, and they came at him. They came at him off the dribble. I think they were physical with him with a crowd. We just didn’t start well with him. He had the first basket and after that I don’t believe we did as well a job as we need to do to get him the ball.”
RE: How much of a problem was spacing, versus just not getting open shots?
“Our front line struggled, if you look at the statistics. They struggled tonight. And I do give credit to the Celtics’ defense. The Celtics defense was physical. The switching hurt us. They rolled out, did that athletic style, the physicality style. That hurt our front line tonight. And Joel (Embiid) struggled tonight. And you combine that with shooting 7 for 33 from the three-point line, it’s going to make for a long night offensively.”
RE: Did Embiid feel the effects of the injury tonight?
“I think there are some times he doesn’t feel it, like when he’s in a crowd, trying to finish, or pass. But his conditioning is fine. Can’t put any blame on that. But it’s clear he hasn’t played very much basketball lately. And it’s going to take some time even as good as he is, it’s going to take a little time to get going again.”
RE: How tough was it for the team to struggle from the 3-point line?
“Yeah, I mean we definitely missed some looks. They also missed a lot of threes too. You know, I just think we fouled too much. Gave them too many free throws.”
RE: What did Boston do tonight to minimize Joel Embiid?
“I think they just did a good job mixing it up. I know we need to identify better. You know get him the ball in better places when we’re feeding it in there. I think at times we kind of let him off the hook a little bit. But they did a good job you know doubling him and doing that and he could never get into a rhythm.”
RE: Do you think the physical aspect of tonight’s game took you guys out of it?
“Yeah at times, Yeah I think definitely at times.”
RE: What do you think is the main thing you have to do to start playing better basketball?
“We just got to get our rhythm back out there, I think everybody. We got to get our rhythm, we got to get our chemistry and our flow back. I thought tonight, you know, they came out and were the more physical team. They were the more dominant team. We tried to make a couple of runs that just didn’t work but we got to get our flow back. We got to get kind of just our identity of how we play. Yeah I mean right now we kind of still – it’s like we’re trying to figure a lot of things out there on the floor. You know it’s hurting us.”
RE: How tough is it to get beat out physically?
“Yeah, I mean, we never want to be the less physical team, especially with the size that we have. But I think you know tonight was one of those games where they imposed their will early. And was able to get that momentum and it’s that excitement in their games coming out towards us. And they just made shots got to the free-throw line and we just didn’t, didn’t withstand their punch.”