NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 14: Nikola Mirotic #3 of the New Orleans Pelicans dunks the ball against the Los Angeles Lakers on February 14, 2018 at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, Louisiana.
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Game 57: Pelicans-Lakers Postgame Quotes 2-14-18

Pelicans Head Coach Alvin Gentry:

On tonight’s win:

“I said to the guys tonight, ‘We really won’t have to worry about pace tonight because they really get up and down the court.’ We like to play that way also, so we invited them to play that way. I thought we did a good job of getting out and running and creating easy baskets. It’s a really tough transition, defensive-wise, to try to get back and get set because by the time they score a basket, they’re right back on top of you. I thought we had enough stops that we were ready to create separation. Even in the first quarter we had the separation. You know at some stage they’re going to have a run and you’re going to make a run when you’re shooting at that high of a percentage, so that’s exactly what happened. Once again, I thought we maintained our poise. We kept doing what we needed to do. We had some lineups out there tonight that hadn’t played together at all, but I thought everyone did a good job. The ball movement was great. Thirty-five assists: I think when you have that, you’re doing a good job.”

 

On the impact from the bench:

“I don’t worry about (Nikola Mirotic). It’s taken four or five games to realize that you don’t have to worry about him. He is a grinder, so when things are not going well he’s just going to keep grinding and grinding. He’s going to find a way to help the team, so I don’t worry about that a whole lot when he’s struggling early in the game. Darius (Miller), I thought, played as aggressive as he’s played in a long time from the standpoint of looking for his shot and taking the ones that were available and shooting with confidence. We never really talk about AD (Anthony Davis), but he’s just AD. He does whatever he has to (in order to) help us win games.”

 

Pelicans Forward Anthony Davis

On scoring 42 points on 18 shots:

“I was just being aggressive, just going out there and trying to do whatever I could to make the team win. Of course I know we are on a good little roll right now. Everybody is feeling a lot of confidence, but most importantly we want to make sure that we ended on a good note going into the All-Star break, so that’s all it was. (I) Just wanted to come out aggressive and play with a lot of energy and these guys wanted to do the same.”

 

On seeing offensive contributions from many players:

“We just played together, moved the basketball. I’m not sure how many assists we had, but we were playing fast. They like to play fast, so teams that play fast, you have to play even faster and that’s what coach was preaching to us. We just tried to get a lot of easy baskets and guys were making shots. We were defending and also playing in transition. When (Rajon) Rondo went out it kind of threw us off for a little bit because he’s usually the one who’s getting us going in transition, so Jrue (Holiday), E’Twaun (Moore) and Ian (Clark) had to take over that and Dre (DeAndre Liggins) too, and we just wanted to make sure that we got back to what got us the lead and that’s a lot of easy baskets in transition.”

 

Pelicans Guard Jrue Holiday

On the importance of having a three-game winning streak going into All-Star break:

“I think we had a lot of motivation getting this break and having this week off, which I think everybody here is excited about. With the things that happened, with the trades happened, with the injuries, having these last three were all good wins and just like you said it will hopefully be momentum coming back.”

 

On Anthony Davis and his roles changing without DeMarcus Cousins:

“AD just needs to score. Put the basketball in the basket. It’s that easy. For me it’s pretty much the same. I might have to score a little bit more at times, but getting Anthony the basketball and other guys the ball where they need it, and same thing with Rondo where he has been facilitating and doing everything well except for this game. He kind of wanted to fight this game.”

 

Pelicans Forward Nikola Mirotić

On playing alongside Anthony Davis:

“I’ve played with a lot of great guys, guys who can score like 20, 30, but Anthony is a different level. You just saw the score. He had 20 already and the way he shot, the way he played, you know it’s just amazing. There is no way somebody can guard him because he can do everything: popping, going to the basket, face-up, low post. It’s just amazing. I’ve got to learn from him something which is great and – but especially for me – I think a big surprise is he’s an amazing guy. I didn’t know him before. I’d heard some great things about him, but he’s a great person.”

 

On the team playing well heading into the break:

“Every game is important for us, especially with – I don’t know how many games we got left, like 25. So we are between (being in or out of the) playoffs, so we know every game is going to be important for us. We know that we need to take care especially (of) our home court. Before the All-Star break, we want to finish well and that was the mindset and we did a great job, but we don’t need to stop now. We need to keep playing, keep building from this moment because there is a lot of room for us to improve as a team and we just need to keep working.”