Keys to the Game
That's What He Said - Hawks at Celtics

That's What He Said - Hawks at Celtics

Brad Stevens

RE: His take on the game:

I didn't think we were very good most of the game on offense, obviously. Shot 32 percent. Defensively we had some issues with transition but we shored that up late. You know, I didn't think they played their best – I didn't think we played our best – which is encouraging because you win. And for 47 minutes, 59.8 seconds, we were the losing team. So it feels good in that locker room for these guys to experience a win where you didn't play perfect but you grinded out a victory against a really good team. We needed that experience and hopefully we can build off it. But we've got – we have to play better basketball to win against their best. That's the way that I look at it.

RE: What he drew up for the last play:

We've run it, we've run it before; I've used the other one, the play before, and so we just wanted to get it into Evan (Turner)'s hands and then Avery (Bradley) had an option off of a single pin-down after Marcus Thornton had curled his guy to try to create a little bit of havoc. But Avery has scored off that play against Denver, to win, or to big shot late, he scored off that play against somebody else. Big shot late. And then Evan has the option to drive. And I knew when I told Evan he had the option to drive, I knew that he was not probably going to get rid of the ball; I thought he was going to try to take it and make a play. One thing about Evan is he's big, with the ability to handle the ball, so he's going to be able to get a shot like he got off, like that, from a similar area to where he beat us last year when he was playing for Philadelphia.

RE: Boston being comfortable coming back from large deficits:

I think we're 20-31 so I'm not ready to anoint us the ‘Come Back Crew' yet. But we have had a lot of games where we've been down and we've come back and been right on the door knocking and not gotten over the hump, and so it was good to finish that off, come back all the way, and win. But you know again, I didn't think they played their best game; they've been on the road for three games, they've had a miraculous couple of months of basketball, and they missed some shots late – and we were fortunate, we made some – and worked out our way.

RE: The effect that grabbing a win before heading into the All-Star break has on his players:

Well, I think they were probably going to go wherever they were going to go anyways... So, I just told them, I said this, I said that, ‘Don't lose the momentum of what we've worked toward, but get off your feet and get some rest.' And I think that's something that we all have to do. We have a lot of room to improve; this should give you good, a little bit of energy, when you come back to work. It's always tough to leave on a break or any period of time, or even a five-day break, on a close loss. So a close win can make you feel a little bit better about traveling and getting back together and getting back on the plane and doing it all again, come next Wednesday.
Evan Turner

RE: If he knew he was going to take the last shot rather than pass:

Yeah, when he (Coach Stevens) said I could drive it I was just hoping Avery (Bradley) wouldn't be mad at me.

RE: If he keeps a diary of his last-minute game winners:

I missed a few in Philly a little bit. I never took advantage of keeping a memory from it - and a lot in college - so I've been fortunate enough to hit a few. So now I just on my sheet, I just wrote, 'second game winner with the Celtics.'

RE: Being discombobulated on the last possession:

We missed an easy tip-in and I think, with me, I was so anxious to take one of the guys off the dribble and I kind of lost the ball a little bit. Once we called a time out it was all good.

RE: Getting a win heading into the All-Star break:

I think it says a lot for us as a team. We were able to come back against the best team in the league, down 20, we shot like 30 percent, but once we try to put to together a whole game, put together the defensive and offensive game, we'll be alright. It's a great win and it's always better to go in on a break on a win and not a loss. It's huge.
Jared Sullinger

RE: Shooting 33 percent and still managing to pull out a victory:

It's big time, shows where our defense is going.

RE: If the team is worried about the looming trade deadline:

It's All-star break, that's the least thing on our mind.

RE: Evan Turner in crunch time:

I've seen him do it time and time again. The biggest thing is, with six seconds, it's kind of hard to draw up an action and we had to go through individual plays and I thought he made a great individual play.

RE: His mindset after the game:

I just think the biggest thing is how we won the game. We won on defense, because we shot very poorly on the offensive end. The defensive end won this game tonight.
Mike Budenholzer

RE: What the Celtics did to win the game:

A lot of credit to Boston. I think in the second half, their defense and just their overall game, I think we weren't able to get to a lot of things we needed to get to and I think you give them a lot of credit. It's a 48 minute game and I think they played better for more of those 48 minutes than us.

RE: What changed in the late stages of the game:

I think we lost some of our discipline, some of the things that we emphasize and do every day, but you always give your opponent credit. There's a reason why we weren't as disciplined and as good as we needed to be. They're well coached, they play hard. We'll be better because of tonight.

RE: Where Atlanta can improve:

I think we have to execute, we have to take care of the ball better. Several possessions we didn't get to what we want and our execution wasn't where it needs to be.
Paul Millsap

RE: Evan Turner's game-winning basket:

It shouldn't have ever came down to that. It's a lesson for us, we've got to learn when we get leads, keep them.

RE: The impact of Boston's fourth-quarter defense:

I think we're more upset with ourselves. I think we know what really took place. Got to stay focused for the whole 48 minutes, that didn't quite happen but we're learning, we'll get better from it.

RE: His three-point play to push the Hawks' lead back to nine in the fourth:

You can kind of feel the momentum changing there, even with that big basket. A team like that with their confidence up it's just tough to stop them. They came down, I think they hit a few threes, once a team like that gets their confidence up it's tough to stop them.
DeMarre Carroll

RE: Atlanta's focus in the fourth quarter:

We have to be more focused. When you have a team on the road you've got to learn. But you know, we learn from it.

RE: What factored into the loss:

I think we really came out with a lack of focus; we didn't really put them down. We were just going through the motions, not playing our hardest. That's what happens when you take any NBA team not seriously.
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