Pelicans vs. Bulls Postgame Quotes 3-3-21 | 2020-21 NBA
Pelicans Head Coach Stan Van Gundy
On the frustration of the team not consistently living up to their potential:
“My thing with them tonight was that when we talk about consistency, we’re not talking about going three-for-seven from three every night and having a consistent shooting night and scoring points every night or even making free throws every night. We’re talking about how you get to be consistent as a team in your approach. It’s in your effort and intensity, and it’s in your focus with what’s going on. We made so many game plan mistakes in the first quarter, and then in the third quarter, we’re giving up back-cuts. Not only was our energy and pace and effort not good, but our focus wasn’t good. Why? I don’t know. You’ll have to ask them.”
On Zion Williamson shooting free throws immediately after the game:
“I like the accountability, but I will say this. Our players know, so I’m not saying anything behind their back. I’ve said this to them. One of our problems is – and again, having the accountability to go out and understand how important his free throws were in that game, I give him all the credit in the world, but one of our problems is our guys will beat themselves up about missing shots and missing free throws, but the defensive stuff just doesn’t get to them in the same way. It doesn’t bother them that we gave up 128 points tonight. It’s not the same thing, so I’m not sure that we’re holding ourselves accountable for the right things. Shots will come and go. Zion (Williamson) has been working on his free throw shooting, and you guys have watched. He has been shooting them great. He had a really tough time at the line, and he wants to correct it. Obviously, I applaud that, and that’s with all of our guys. Our guys will come in and work. Now, I would like to see us as a group hold ourselves accountable both individually and as a team for the defensive end of the floor, and I’m not sure we’ve gotten there yet.”
Pelicans Guard JJ Redick
On guys learning to take defense personally:
"Look, I think every player's probably…not every player, more players are…their disposition is to be more of an offensive player. I think that's probably 80 to 90 percent of the league thinks that way. Winning and losing, I think, should bother you. When you look on our defensive numbers, that's where you have to be bothered by defense. I think if you have any competitive juice at all, you'd be bothered by looking at our defensive numbers because that's ultimately what's preventing us from putting together more consistency in terms of the result. I said to you guys yesterday, if we could just be an average defense we'd probably have a winning record, but we're at an extreme on offense and an extreme on defense. So we've got to be better at that end in order to get better results.”
Pelicans Forward Zion Williamson
On putting up shots after the game:
"Man. Y'all saw the game man. Usually I go to another gym to get my shots up, but I really feel like I let my team down. It's like I tell y'all, I never want to let them down. And all those free throws, it can't go down like that. I’ve got to be better in that situation. If I want to be one of those great players, I've got to take a lot of responsibility and I've got to be ready for those moments, so right after the game I just felt like I had to go back on the court, find my flow."
On how frustrating it is that defense keeps being the problem:
"I mean, it's the NBA. It's either going to be offense or defense, and for us right now our offense is fine, but we’ve just got to play great defense for four quarters. We have our moments where we play great for three and a half or some games we play great for four, but tonight we really started off the game a little slow and that was really the tone-setter. It's like you said. I know we are here a lot with our defense, but I mean we’ve got to do it. Like I said, I still do feel like we are close to it, because this is the NBA…winning isn't easy. I trust my teammates, my coaches. I feel like we're going to find it, we're going to figure it out."