2/7 Arbella Quote Worthy: Hawks vs. Celtics
Click on a player to reveal quotes from their postgame press conference.
RE: How do you keep winning with a player rotation that changes night to night?
“Their injury report was deeper than ours. Everybody’s got to roll with the play; we still have guys on the court. We had two All-Stars tonight, so we all have to complement them. We all have to play our best within our roles to help them, and I thought our guys did that. I thought (Marcus) Smart’s defense and his set-up for guys was great,(Enes) Kanter was great with what he usually does, and then Romeo (Langford) was good.”
RE: How will you approach your upcoming road trip?
“Yeah, really tough. Early game on Sunday, so we’ll get out of here tomorrow afternoon and get ready to try and play our best. I think that Oklahoma City’s had a heck of a year; they present a lot of problems. Excellent, excellent play all the way up and down their lineup. They look really connected. One of my favorite teams to watch in the league this year, so it’ll be a real challenge. And then obviously we’ll cross that bridge, Houston, when we get there.”
RE: Can you speak to what you thought of the fan’s reaction to Vince Carter and what is believed to be his final game?
“I asked him if it was real, and he said yes, because I keep thinking he’s going to come back and keep surprising everybody. I said this in Atlanta and I mean this: I don’t think there are a lot of guys that can be as accomplished as he has, and transitioned into the mentor role and playing significantly less. I think that would be very difficult, and it’s a great testament to who he is, that he’s willing to do that and to be in a situation where they have a bunch of young guys that are looking for the right leadership and mentorship. Obviously he’s great at it, because everybody just kept resigning him until he decided he wanted to be done. I think that’s a great testament to who he is; kudos to him on a great career. I’ll remember just as fondly this smooth transition to a leader as well as some of the dunks early on in his career.”
RE: Is the plan for Jaylen Brown and Daniel Theis to travel on the trip?
“Yeah, I think Gordon (Hayward) will be available Sunday, the other two will be day-to-day. We’ll find out more tomorrow; obviously it’s an early game. I haven’t gotten an exact on either one, but we’re taking them on the trip. Hopefully they’ll at least play by Tuesday, but maybe Sunday.”
RE: How do you keep winning these games with people out of the lineup?
“I think when someone is going down, people are just stepping up. I want to give a huge shout out to Romeo (Langford). Both ends of the floor, offensively, defensively, he’s playing hard; he’s having fun, he’s learning, so I’m really proud of him. It’s nice to see him grow like that.”
RE: Is this the guy (Romeo Langford) you see in practice?
“Oh yeah. He’s even harder, oh yeah. He’s always like that. First one in the gym, shooting, staying extra, lifting; it just pays off.”
RE: Have you been giving Grant (Williams) some offensive rebounding tips as well?
“Oh my god yeah. He’s been a monster, man. He’s going out there, he’s getting all those. He’s making me proud. I’m very happy because I told him even the guy shooting 98% go to every offensive rebound. Try to get them. He’s had unbelievably high basketball IQ. Good teammate.”
RE: How much more comfortable were you tonight, after starting on Wednesday night?
“I was a lot more comfortable. I mean, took me a little bit just to get the rhythm of the game, but once I got running up and down the court a little bit I felt – I felt like I belonged out there.”
RE: Did you feel like you “belonged out there” the other night?
“Yeah, I did. But this game was just – it just felt different just because I started the last game and then now coming off the bench, which is most likely what I’m going to be doing most – most of the time. Took a while to get used to it a little bit.”
RE: How good did it feel to see your shots go down tonight?
“It felt good. Because I shoot a lot, practice my shot a lot, and now it’s paying off.”
RE: The game overall:
“I was proud of our guys tonight. If we perform and compete the way we did after the first five minutes, that is a pretty fine group. I thought our guys were very resilient. We finished first quarter on a 16-4 run. We had some great ball movement and some great attacks. I thought our guys were scrambling and fighting all over the place. Going into the fourth quarter down 14 and to get back into it the way we did was impressive. To be as short-handed as we were was impressive, and I commend our guys for just competing. Competing for 48 minutes, really. The first three possessions were miscues. It wasn’t effort; it was more of a mental breakdown. We were trying to blitz Kemba (Walker) right from the start on the first two possession,s and he gets going. Then you are chasing a guy like (Jayson) Tatum where we take the wrong route. So that was more of a game plan and miscue to start the game. After that we were pretty good.”
RE: Players’ response to having nine available players for the game
“I use the experience we had in Philadelphia where you're shorthanded, and sometimes it works in your advantage. Guys aren’t looking over your shoulders for whose coming in; they play free. Coming in they play free and I have to coach free because there aren’t going to be a whole lot of substitutions, and you have to roll with the guys that are out there. As a player you kind of like that. If a guy is averaging 15 minutes and gets to play 30, he is having fun so he doesn’t care. You got to do that and play free with them. Again, slow start but guys are starting to get in rhythm because they are on the court and they start seeing Treveon Graham hit a couple shots. And Kevin (Huerter) gets into a rhythm he just stays aggressive. All of those plays are just from being competitive.”
RE: What allowed your team to come back into the game in the fourth quarter?
“We were getting turnovers; we started playing better defensively and trying to rush the ball a little bit. Get the ball out of Kemba’s hands, just try to make them make mistakes. Put a little bit more pressure on them and try to create turnovers. They started taking quick shots and we started to hit threes in the fourth quarter a little bit.”
RE: Your team being shorthanded tonight and the team’s performance:
“You just have to put in effort no matter if you are shorthanded or not. That is one thing that cannot ever change is the effort that goes into games and digging in defensively. We are going to keep cycling guys. We had nine guys today I think every couple of minutes there were two coming in for somebody and it is the type of stuff you have to do to piece games together. Hopefully Sunday we can get more people on the court.”
RE: What was the conversation for you guys going into the fourth quarter?
“I feel like almost a confidence check or a gut check. I feel like we have competed with them played with them enough to understand what they are doing or what they are trying to do; who they are trying to get it to and the sets that are running. For us it was more looking back in the mirror and where we could tighten up execution and defensive spots.”
RE: What was the team’s response to being shorthanded tonight:
“Pretty pleased. Obviously you always want to be at full-strength, especially when you lose an all-star caliber guy like Trae (Young.) We’ll continue to see what is happening with our roster the last couple of days. Obviously it is a tough thing; we always go back to being competitors, being professionals. It is a part of our job.”