Postgame Quotes - November 24, 2017


On overcoming the double-digit deficit:

“The second half, I thought, the whole way we played really well defensively…We didn’t give them some of the easy buckets we had given them in the first half. They shot 34 percent in the second half, 21 percent from three. We outrebounded them by 11 after being dominated. I thought the big thing at halftime where I was upset and talked to our team was our rebounding. It was 14-0 second chance points at the end of the first half. When you are down 10, that's the game. And that’s a controllable thing for us. I thought we fought a lot harder in the second half. We had 14 turnovers in the second half. So it’s not like we played great, but we fought really hard. That’s what ended up getting us the win.” 

On Andre Drummond’s play in second half:

“In the first half, he was not good. He had two rebounds at halftime. That’s one of the reasons we were getting crushed. [Steven] Adams was going at him. In the second half, he was much better and we made some big shots. Langston [Galloway] made a couple big shots. Luke [Kennard] made a good shot. Avery [Bradley] only made one three tonight, but it was a big one. [Anthony] Tolliver made a couple of shots. Our threes were really what we had going offensively. There were moments of good ball movement, but a lot of turnovers. They lead the league in forcing turnovers and we did not handle the ball well against them. It’s starting to creep up on us. That’s something we are going to have to do a lot better job of.“ 


On importance of winning with many road games:

“It’s great. Honestly, we know we start off hot, we have one of the tougher stretches…We have a lot of them on the road against great playoff teams from last year who are coming back with the same personnel or similar or some teams have new. Everybody’s hungry. Going into these buildings is going to be tough on us but as long as we stay together and stay with this team comradery and keep picking each other up then we got a good chance. It is always great to get a win on the road.” 


 On the second unit’s identity:

“Coach, defensively he wants us to pressure, offensively he has implemented this new offense. We are passing and cutting and you can’t really scout it. When you have us randomly cutting and pushing the basketball and driving the ball, and I have shooters all over the place. It really helps, it really works and we have been playing well.”


Opening Statement:

“I thought we came out in the first half and really played well coming off our last game. I know a lot of people talked about how these guys respond. And it’s a great group as it relates to them wanting to compete. I thought in the second half, to me the biggest difference was the three-point line. I thought we had some really good looks. Coming down the stretch, in terms of the ball movement and the kind of shots we generated, was really positive. I thought our stamina on defense was much better through the 48 minutes. We did lose a couple three-point shooters; they did make some tough threes. I thought we had a lot of opportunities. I thought the last four minutes we had really good ball movement and really generated some good looks. The ball just didn’t go in the basket for us. Because of the limited amount of free throws for both teams, it was kind of a wash, so the difference in the game was really the three-point line. That was the biggest difference.” 


On whether tonight felt like a step back from the win against the Golden State Warriors:

“No, it didn’t feel like a step back. Usually in games where teams come back, they gain momentum. Sometimes we let the game get out of hand but tonight we didn’t. As far as losing the game, it was a step back. As far as how we played and competed, it wasn’t a step back.” 

On how to stay on course throughout the season:

“We are staying on the course. I have been on teams where it goes south quick. We are nowhere near that type of team. Everyone is on board. Everybody works. Everybody wants to win. We are right there as far as turning that corner. We are looking up.” 


On the offense in the second half:

“I thought we had some good looks. There are shots that we obviously didn’t make, but that’s just how it is. It’s another game we had under control, had our hands on, and I thought their second unit came out and played great. They had some big plays down the stretch that they made and ultimately won the game.” 

On what went on defensively in the second half:

“I thought we didn’t do a good enough job of communicating on some plays. In transition, a couple of guys got free looks that they made some of and missed some. But those were possessions that we could have cut out. On some possessions it was switching, which we have been so good at, we had a lack of communication there as well, so it’s just what it came down to. We weren’t tied in when we needed it most.” 

On if you just want to get off a clean look at the end of games:

“Yeah, especially when they have their best defender on you, you have to take what is available. Again, we are going to live with the shot that Russ took. Russ, again, is a shot maker. He is going to make difficult shots. He got to a sweet spot where he could pull up, in our eyes that is a good look for us, he just missed it.” 


On the half-court shot from Ish Smith:

“That comes into factor but there’s a couple of plays we could’ve made on our end; defensive breakdowns, communication and talking on our switches. [We had] a couple of mess ups down toward the end of the game that we didn’t come up with. I look at those as things we messed up on, not necessarily half-court shots cause that’s part of the game, that’s going to happen so we have to go back and look at film and control what we can control.”

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