Game 32: Pelicans-Magic Postgame Quotes 12-22-17

Pelicans Head Coach Alvin Gentry

What things stood out to you tonight with this win?
“I thought we did a good job with the turnovers number one, which didn’t compromise our defense very much at all. And then I thought we did a good job of moving the basketball and finding open people and I liked the pace that we played at and I thought our shot selection was really good.”

Did you get a full 48 minutes tonight out of your guys?
“Well I think so, I thought defensively we were really good for most of the game and then obviously the last five minutes, you know there was a little bit of slippage and stuff but you know that’s to be expected. I just thought we played one of our better games as far as defensively and rebounding the basketball and then I was just really happy with the way we played offensively. I thought Demarcus did a great job of just finding open guys and then AD just did a good job of reading the defense and coming up with a couple of easy baskets on lobs.”

Those lineups to start the second and fourth quarters with DeMarcus and four bench players did really well for you, what did you see from them?
“Well we were trying to rest guys as much as we could and we tried to run our offense through DeMarcus. I thought he did a great job of picking times to go and try to score and then creating double-team situations and finding open players and I thought the guys did a good job coming through.”

Do you feel like you’re in better shape going into tomorrow having been able to rest guys?
“Yeah, I think anytime that you can hold them you know, low 30s, high 20s, that’s really good and I didn’t think there was a whole lot of banging and stuff that went on so that was good also. And then Darius plays a lot of minutes for us and we were able to keep him at 26 and you know Jrue didn’t play a ton of minutes so I think any time those guys are not in the high 30s like they usually are on a back-to-back situation is better for us.”

The Magic didn’t shoot the ball well tonight, what did you like from your defense?
“I thought we were solid, I thought we did a good job with dribble penetration which has been a little bit of an issue with us and then I thought we did a great job with our help defense, pulling in and taking away some of the easy rolls, some of the easy baskets. And then I thought we did a great job of challenging threes, we really did. AD was a little late on one three by Mo Speights, but other than that I thought all the ones that they shot were challenged threes and that’s what we want.”

Pelicans center Anthony Davis:

“Our defense was good.  We came out and wanted to defend and get back on track.  We didn’t really worry about offense.  We did that (play defense) tonight one through five.  We were talking out there and just trusting each other.  So when you do that, we are a tough team to beat.”

On why he had multiple alley-oop finishes tonight:
“Just reading the defense.  They were trying to play top side.  Me and Rondo just kind of have that chemistry where we know when to do it and it was there a lot tonight.”

On limiting turnovers tonight:
“Some of those turnovers were offensive fouls and trying to make the right play so we can live with those.  I think we only had 16 and I think we were up there with 25 for the past couple of games so for us to limit our turnovers and just have one that first quarter, it gives us opportunities to get shots at the rim.”

“When we defend it gives us a chance to get out and run.  When guys get looks in rhythm it creates easy looks at the rim.  If we defend, then nine times out of 10 we will have a great game offensively.  We just have to keep defending.”

“We got a couple plays where we tried to look for high/low situations where I go screen on him (Cousins) or he comes screen on me and looks for a lob or something like that.  The chemistry is there.”

On comfort level offensively with Rondo in lineup:
“We are very comfortable.  It has kind of been that way since Rondo has been playing with us since he got back from injury.  It gives Jrue opportunities to go play.  It doesn’t put that much pressure on him (Holiday) to kind of run the show.  Rondo is not looking to score, he is looking to pass and Jrue is looking to score.  It is a great combination for us and Rondo sees a lot of getting guys in positon to where we can be successful.”

Pelicans guard Jameer Nelson:

“DeMarcus is a hell of a player and he does things to ignite us especially on the offensive end.  He does a great job of facilitating, scoring and also doing things like setting screens.  We are trying to close on set screens and do things better.  He is obviously a big part of what we do and we feed off of him.”

“I feel like he (Davis) always has an athletic advantage no matter who he is playing against.  His length is athleticism.  His skill level…he is just a guy who is a mismatch every night.  He can get us an easy bucket or easy shot.  He is also a guy who plays unselfish as well.”

“It all started with Rondo tonight.  He did a tremendous job of coming out and setting the tone and picking up full court, pressuring guys and making it a little tough for them especially in the first quarter.  I thought we got off to a great start on the defensive end and it kind of set the tone for the entire game.”