See what the Brooklyn Nets had to say after their 130-108 win over the Boston Celtics.
On good offense leading to good defense:
“I think they are kind of one in the same. Your defense can lead to your offense, your offense can lead to defense. You want both. You want energy on both sides of the floor. You want to work and push to succeed at both ends of the floor, and if you succeed at one end, it helps the other. If you're pushing to get stops, you can get out and run, you get more opportunities. And if the ball is going through the hoop, it can also give you life. You want to defend with more energy and more enthusiasm.”
On building up each game:
"I think it's about having the mindset to get better. We're not gonna get better every game. You're gonna have good games, bad games, you're gonna go forward, take a step back. It's about over the course of this journey are we taking something with us every night. I thought obviously we were a little sharper offensively tonight. The ball moved better. We had 31 assists and a lot of them early. So that was positive. It's about that time together on the floor. Time together to understand and to jell and to make those connections that will afford us more down the line. It's just time and it's the mindset that we need to improve. Like I keep saying, this is not a team that's running this back for year four or five. We're trying to figure it out as we go here. So each night is important, not only on the scoreboard but also as far as our development."
On James Harden's unselfishness:
"That's one of the great strengths and attributes he brings to our team, that he can organize and set up people in spots to succeed, to make beautiful passes, but also simple passes that will catch the defense off guard. Like I said, the first domino falls and it's hard for them to catch up. That's his role on our team, to playmake, to orchestrate, to give guys opportunities to find that balance to score and to playmake. I think our guys are finding a rhythm together. Every game presents different challenges, but tonight was a little bit of growth as far as them having more on the floor together, the second game in a row where they got to feel it and connect, and James kind of organized that."
On defense in playoffs:
"I see a lot of people comparing our defense now to the regular season, I think every team's defensive effort has ratcheted up in the playoffs with the amount of preparation and throughout the regular season there wasn't a lot of practice time for anyone. And that's what you need when you want to fine tune your defense is actual reps. And we were able to get some reps right after the regular season was over. Right after we found out that Boston won the play-in we started getting reps in on what we wanted to do on the defensive side of the ball. Everyone here is capable of guarding one on one and helping each other but we needed to actually get some reps in in practice in order for our bodies to go through for it and mentally to see what we wanted to do.”
On offense improving:
"To be honest I'm more so concerned about our defense, but offensively, when Joe gets it going like that, that unlocks our whole team. But we know that Joe can get run off nine to 12 points at any given moment so we got to continue to look for him, Landry as well our quick shooter and that's going to open it up for everybody else. But once we get stops and rebound and get out and go, just like any team in the league that's what really creates the best offense. We got guys that can score off the dribble, guys that can catch and shoot and get to the free throw line so we got to be ready for any defense that's getting thrown at us."
On offense and spacing:
"Just a mixture of good spacing, good ball movement guys are getting to their spots and drawing the defense to kick in and obviously rebounding and getting out in transition. We know in Boston it's going to be way tougher to score so our defense has to travel, but we're looking forward to going out there and playing together again on the offensive side."
On spacing and ball movement:
"A lot of it is just sort of feeling the game, too. In Game 1, we weren’t ourselves offensively. I think it was just getting settled in, kind of trying to find our way, there was a lot of excitement getting back with the fans in the building. But tonight, it was a lot of stuff that we worked on in practice in terms of spacing, getting to our spots and trying to make the extra pass, too. We saw in Game 1 how much they collapsed when guys get into the paint or even how keyed in they were with Kyrie, James in a lot of situations."
On making seven 3-pointers:
"To be honest, I wasn’t really thinking about it a ton. I was just caught up in the game, the rhythm of the game. A lot of it, too, with me -- I kind of say the same stuff during the regular season – if I have space, I’m going to shoot it. Tonight, for instance, I was able to get 10 shots up. So a lot of times, it was like, if I have space or I’m moving, I’m looking to try and be aggressive. The game sort of fluctuates, so you just have to take and give whatever the game gives you. Tonight was one of those situations where I got a lot of open looks early, and then you get the confidence going and start hunting a little more and guys are looking for you."
On offensive options:
"It’s a pick-your-poison situation with us. There’s definitely games when teams are closing out to you, but with us, when the ball is moving like tonight and guys are putting pressure on the paint and everybody is still cognizant and worried ab out those three guys, you’ve just got to find windows. Tonight, the ball was being sprayed around and it was really just finding me early on. I don’t take it as a sign of disrespect or anything like that. I think it’s just sort of that this is the reality of the night is that we have three of the best offensive players that ever played."