That's What He Said - Cavaliers at Celtics
Click on a player to reveal quotes from their postgame press conference.
RE: What is your assessment of what went on today?
“I can echo off coach. Just by them playing extremely well tonight. I mean you’ve got to give credit when credit is due. We’re very spirited. High energy. I think as coach said we came out with a very aggressive mind set, then they made a few things difficult. Put us in some positions ourselves, where you can see that they’ve made adjustments. I feel like over these last 3 games they’ve made some adjustment since the last time we played them, on our pick and rolls, on some of our plays. As we go forward I think that we can consistently learn from not only a game like tonight but the last few games with playing the high intense teams of the Eastern Conference, where we’ve been tested. I have a lot to learn. I think that we as a team do as well. It’s just great when you’ve got a chance to go through this as a young group and including before the All-Star break where it’s going to test a lot of us, and I’m looking forward to how we respond.”
RE: How important is it for the young guys to learn and go forward from this?
“It’s vital. Every day is an opportunity to progress. Sometimes you’re going to get hit back. Like I said, I’m just interested to see how we respond. It takes first individually, going back and doing the things we need to do to learn, and then as a group we all come back together. So, we’re still consistently learning and evolving, and going against great teams like this that hopefully we’ll see down the line. It’s great to have things like this. I’m not saying that the loss is necessarily great, it’s just the experience itself, because they’re high level teams and you have to give credit when credit is due. You know we’re playing against unbelievable players that have come in, and made shots, and made it tough for us defensively, and we’ve just got to learn from it.”
RE: What are your thoughts on Paul Pierce being honored?
“I’m excited for him, for his family as well. You know to be a part of a great lineage of great players that have come before him and now his legacy will last forever. Now it’s in the rafters forever and that’s something that, as a kid you dream of, other than winning a championship, and he’s got a championship and a finals MVP, so a lot of his goals, I feel he’s attained. But one thing you give credit to Boston is that, man, they praise the legends. Tonight’s his night. I’m nothing but happy for him.”
RE: How would you describe what happened out there today?
“First of all, I thought we came out, we were ready, we were playing with great pace. I thought our first unit played really well, right out of the gate, and then I thought that they did a great job of getting some aggressive plays. Pushing some of our catches out. Turning us over a few times at the end of the first half, lead to some baskets. Kind of changed the complexion of the game. From there I think they just dominated the game. I mean, I don’t think there was any one area. I thought it was pretty much they dominated the game.”
RE: How different is Cleveland to play now, with the trade deadline changes to the roster?
“They’ve had good players the whole time. They’ve obviously got a great player that is helping to, has the ball a lot, you’ve got to account for in all the different situations they put him in, and then he’s surrounded by shooters. Those guys can all score the ball. The 2 guys rolling to the rim really hurt us tonight as well. We didn’t defend it our normal way. We came out playing really well offensively. Credit them. They played really well.”
RE: In the last 4 games you’ve been down 25 or more, have you seen a constant thread as to why?
“I’d say the constant is we’ve been out played pretty thoroughly in segments of each of those games, and like Kyrie said, teams have been very aggressive against us. They’ve been very physical against us and have played really well, and we haven’t played as well. Obviously against teams like this, against players like this, things don’t go your way, that happens. You’ve got to, you know, you’re going to get a result like that.”
RE: Are you concerned about the element of fighting back?
“Hard to say that cause the other day we’re down 26 and we came back and took the lead with 3 minutes to go. I would say that today, when we got hit, we got tight offensively, we missed some shots. Now, all of a sudden, they are on a run and we didn’t really have it to come back. And I didn’t put a couple of these guys back in. So, I think that’s part of it too. But at the end of the day, I don’t question the fight of this group, at all. I have no doubt that this group will respond when hit in the mouth, generally.”
RE: Defensively, today?
“Yeah we stunk. But they were really good. They had a lot to do with that.”
RE: With the changes that Cleveland made what now makes them so difficult to play against?
“I just think they have a lot of perimeter players that can shoot the three and attack the basket. For whatever reason, they are playing with more pace.”
RE: You guys have trailed by 26 or more in three of the last four games, why has the team struggled recently?
“I think that offensively we need to have more pace to what we do. Also, we need to make sure that we play at a high intensity all 48 minutes. We need to be very engaged for 48 minutes. I feel like in the past we have taken a step back on that.”
RE: Do you have a favorite memory of playing against Paul that sticks out in memory?
“I had my battles over the years, but I think in 2008 during my rookie year and the year they won it was a lot of fun battling against them. With Atlanta taking them to the brink, to a game seven, that’s something that was fun to be a part of.”
RE: How much of an important step was a win for these guys?
“Very important, I think coming into a big game like tonight and all of our guys performed. All of our new guys performed and played well. So that’s a good sign. We just have to keep going off this one. It was a good win for us. We have to keep moving forward. We have to run more sets now. It was a good win for us and the new guys were great.”
RE: What were you most concerned about coming in and how did that play out?
“Offensively. Not having plays in. New guys didn’t know a lot of sets. But it was important to get all five of those guys up there together. There were a few plays they could run and they were phenomenal. They played hard, they competed. It’s good to see our team smiling again.
RE: New players:
“It was a good start. It’s almost like the new guys have been here. It started with George (Hill) and his on the ball pressure and him just running the team. Then three guys came off the bench and Jordan (Clarkson) is ready to score at any point in time, but his composure was great. Rodney (Hood) plays with so much poise and Larry (Nance Jr.) was just controlled in the perimeter. (Nance Jr.) had some great pick-n-rolls, he got in a lob, and a dunk. It was a good start for the new guys, it was a good start for all of us with our revamped team, so far."
RE: What about the way you guys contested offensively, it didn’t seem like (the Celtics) had many free looks:
“That’s what we want to do. We’ve been preaching it for quite a while now, and it hasn’t resulted in numbers or wins. We feel like right now with the type of caliber players that we have now that we can defend at a high level. It going to be some games where teams make shots, we understand that. Tonight we felt like we just wanted to contest all the shots we could and try to make them miss as many (shots) as we could… we did a good job of that.”
RE: You feel like you guys will give this locker room the lift this team needs:
“Yeah, It’s our first day. I feel like if we keep playing like that, having fun, moving the ball around, things will come a lot faster for us.
RE: How did you get the call that you got the trade, where were you at with your emotions. How did you feel?
“We were at a game, I was with the Lakers getting ready to play the Thunder. We had shoot around and I was (asleep), Magic (Johnson) and Rob (Pelinka) was calling, (I) kind of pushed the phone to the side a little bit to get a little more rest before the game. I called him back ten-fifteen minutes later and they just told me I was traded and that was it. I was excited, but at the same time, I was like this is my first time getting traded, coming somewhere where I don’t really know anybody. But, it’s easier having played here. These guys were very welcomed us with open arms.”