Postgame Quotes - November 20, 2017

DETROIT PISTONS HEAD COACH STAN VAN GUNDY:  (On game): “Unfortunately for most teams in this league there’s three, four, five of those games a year, you know. I mean the Warriors may not have one and some of those teams, but for the rest of us, it’s going to be three, four, five of those games a year and tonight was one of them. We didn’t play well at either end, we made mistakes and they played terrifically. I actually thought, I mean it’s weird when you look at the stats they have 116 points, they only have 34 in the paint. Now they’re a team that usually scores in the paint, they only have 34 points in the paint and they only got 16 free throws so they scored 66 points outside of the paint on us. I thought what happened is they made their threes early and we talked about this a little bit, so what happens is you’re so worried about the threes that you start staying out on your man more and you’re not in the gaps. Well what happens now and this happened several times in the first half, now the ball’s driven into the paint, it sucks your whole defense in and the ball comes out. Now you can’t get back out. If you stay in the gaps and can stop the ball early you’ve got shorter close outs but that’s what shooting will do. Look I thought in the first quarter LeBron (James) just made a lot of great individual shots. He was hitting pull-up threes, pull-up twos, but then from there they really started to break our defense down. They shot the ball really, really well and it was just a long, long night. We weren’t very good offensively either. I didn’t think our ball movement was very good I don’t really think we had anybody who had a good night so like I said it was one of those nights were they were great and we were awful and that’s what happens.” 

DETROIT PISTONS FORWARD STANLEY JOHNSON: On what it’s like to be part of a game where the lead balloons: “They played well. We didn’t really make that many shots, they did and it was tough for us. There’s no excuse, they played a really good game. You just brush that one off your shoulder, it’s only one loss in the column. I thought we were playing pretty good before that. We’ve had a rough week, I think it was, last week we lost three out of four. So, it’s all about next game and we’re very cognizant of our schedule coming up, but that’s no excuse because it’s the NBA. It is what it is.” 

On guarding LeBron James when he’s hitting threes: “I’m living though. I’m living. He’s a great player and all that, but what really killed me was the first foul. That takes my aggression away and sometimes I think there’s some stuff going on, but the first one, first play of the game I can’t really get into him and get one that I earn. Now, it’s like I really have to play off of him because if I come up on him he’s so good to the basket, but that’s what great players do they figure out the game plan and they find out a way to attack it and that’s what he did all night. I’m not sure how many he ended up with, but he definitely was a lot of their scoring for them, passing-wise, cutting-wise, stuff like that.” 

CLEVELAND CAVALIERS HEAD COACH TYRONN LUE: (On tonight’s win): “It was a good win against a good team. “ 

(On if he’s been waiting to see a performance like that all season): “Yeah, it’s been a while but over the last 6-7 games, we’ve been starting to come together offensively and defensively, moving the basketball and making the extra pass.  That’s what we’re capable of doing.” 

(On LeBron James’s minutes): “Yeah I hear about that all the time, but I played with Michael Jordan when he was 39, he played 37 minutes a night.  Karl Malone was 37 and played 38 minutes a night.  Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Kobe (Bryant), so everybody’s built different and if you’re one of the greats sometimes you’ve got to play and sometimes you get rest like tonight.  

CLEVELAND CAVALIERS FORWARD KEVIN LOVE: (On chemistry): “We felt like the first unit came out and set the tone and everyone came out with a lot of confidence and shot their shots. We ran our sets especially on the defensive end we knew exactly what we wanted to get done and slowing those guys down and forcing them into tough shots and that kind of translated and showed throughout the entire game.” 

(On game): “It felt like us. There wasn’t any lapses, there wasn’t any let ups throughout the game. We kept the turnovers down, that was huge for us, especailly in the first half. I felt like we defended the three well and other than that we ran our offense, we took our shots, we hit our shots, hit our threes. There was a lot of good things that felt like or looked like stuff that were capable on the floor. We felt like it was one of those games we put it all together.”  

CLEVELAND CAVALIERS FORWARD LeBRON JAMES:(On where they started)” We start with our mental approach to the game, first of all.  We have a defensive game plan and that was 48 minutes. That was 48 minutes of game planning and execution right from the beginning.” 

(On what’s been the recipe for success): “We’ve just been playing well as of late. We’re in a good groove right now, and we wanted to try to continue that coming in here today.  They’ve been playing extremely good basketball.  They were coming off a great win last night in Minnesota.  So, we knew that they were going to come out here and try to give us their best shot, and had to be ready for that.  We just had a lot of flurries tonight, we had a lot of flurries and we didn’t stop.