Nets-Knicks Postgame Quotes

Head Coach Kenny Atkinson, Brooklyn Nets

On the Nets’ shooting tonight:
“I thought that we missed a lot of open ones, but still I thought that we took some contested ones, especially the contested ones off the dribble, you know the contested threes off the dribble – it’s a tough shot, I felt like. Too many of those. But I do think our offense has a long way to go. We struggled to execute. Give the Knicks credit, I thought they pressured our guards and did a good job of getting into the ball and we struggled executing.”

On Enes Kanter’s game inside the paint and if it is because of a lack of size:
“First of all he’s a very good player and he’s a load, so when we play him the first game of the regular season we are going to have to do a better job. I thought he caught the ball too easily in the post. A guy like that who is so good with the ball in the post, you better keep it from him, or push him off the block. He caught it too deep. Then we let him get to the middle too much and offensive rebounding – we can’t box him out with one guy. We need two guys, we need three guys and, I’m going to say this later, we need five guys – five guys coming back to rebound. So, that’s kind of his strength, but we have to do a much better job. You are correct on that.”

Evaluating Caris LeVert’s performance:
“I thought he was up and down. He did some good things and obviously he gets to the rim well and I thought those contested threes were on his plate, so he needs to clean up his shot selection a little. I’d say up and down, did some good things and mixed in some – like I said, shot selection was one of the things that concerned me a little bit.”

D'Angelo Russell

On his takeaways from the first game:
“There were a lot of positives. I think we came out and competed, played hard. We focused on what coach was expecting of us. Things we can work on as well. But it’s something that we can watch film, build on it.”

On what he sees in practice from Rodions Kurucs that translated into tonight’s game:
“Same thing, same thing. He’s active, he’s athletic, he plays hard, he knows his role. He knows what he’s capable of. He never steps outside the box. He’s the guy that plays hard and brings that energy.”

On if he likes the combination of splitting ball handling duties with Caris LeVert:
“Yes, it’s fine. I think we have a lot of ball handlers on the team. We complement each other. The more we play together I think the more the chemistry will grow. The more practice we get to play and the different opponents we get to play against, I think we will grow together.”

Rodions Kurucs

On getting his chance at the end and making the most of it:
“It was really emotional for me because I didn’t play last year. It was a really good moment for me. I really enjoyed it. I enjoyed every minute.”

On what his strengths are and what he brings to the team:
“I think I bring energy on defense. I’m just working on all the stuff, what coach told me. I’ll help my team out. I’ll do all my best. I’ll give my all.”

On his impact defensively:
“I’m used to it because I have long hands. I’m used to that, you know.”

On if Coach Atkinson indicated how much he would play:
“What coach gives me, I’ll take it. I’ll use my chance. When he puts me in the game, I’ll use it. I’ll play hard, I’ll play 100 percent and we’ll see what Coach Kenny decides.”

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