DET/CLE Game 1 Post Game Pressers

Discussion in 'Pistons and NBA' started by roscoe36, May 21, 2007.

  1. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    NBA EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS: CAVALIERS v PISTONS

    May 21, 2007

    Flip Saunders

    DETROIT, MICHIGAN: Game One

    Q. First of all, talk about the first half performance when you guys came out real sluggish. It looked almost like last year's conference semifinals. And then what do you think you did at halftime to get going a little bit?

    Coach Flip Saunders: I think we were sluggish because we missed some shots early. I thought that we started playing a little bit individualistic and didn't play together as much as a team. Each guy individually wanted to do it on his own and didn't set things up for the other people. When we play like that, we got bogged down, when we start playing one-on-one. That's what we did early and couldn't get momentum.

    Point blank, two of our key players as far as keying what we do, not turning the ball over, is Chauncey and Tay, and they both struggled tonight offensively. Defensively I thought they were good, but offensively they struggled in areas. Chauncey has the ball as much as he does in our offense and struggles like he did, we're going to look out of sync.

    I thought the second half our bigs started getting a little more aggressive to the basket. You know, we played now, I guess, 11 games, or how many in the playoffs so far. I told our guys whoever is the most aggressive team during the game is going to have success. I thought tonight we let them come at us and be the aggressor and we were not the aggressor until the last six or seven minutes when we did what we did.


    Q. Defensively the game plan going in against LeBron, how well do you think your team executed that defensive game plan?

    Coach Flip Saunders: Well, the only thing we didn't do, which I was disappointed, was we didn't rebound, and they jumped out and got a big rebound late, so we dodged a bullet there. But I thought that we limited LeBron's number of open opportunities against us. I thought we put more pressure on our defense by the number of turnovers they had offensively to give them some open floor as far as opportunities.
    I thought Ilgauskas was great tonight. You know, the idea is to try to contain LeBron as much as you can.


    Q. LeBron is not a factor in the first half, yet you're down by six, did you still feel good? You still wanted LeBron that inactive, or were you worried --

    Coach Flip Saunders: It was both. I was happy we were only down six the way we played, but I was concerned because LeBron hadn't got going yet, and I knew that he might start putting some pressure on us a bit more.

    The big thing is that I'm not happy the way we played. I don't think any of the guys in our locker room are happy. You've got to give some credit. Cleveland was the aggressor and they did some very good things as far as defensively, but one thing we did is continue to defend. We came out and got ourselves back in the game in the third quarter, which we've done in Chicago in Game 4, the other game, and then the other thing we did is we got ourselves where defensively the second half we gave up 35 points, so we did a fairly good job defensively in the second half.


    Q. When you look at Chauncey's seven turnovers and his low scoring until the fourth quarter, do you credit the way they were trapping him up on top?

    Coach Flip Saunders: I think it was both. I think trapping caught him a little bit. They were extremely aggressive and caught him a little bit off guard. He just didn't seem to have his -- even in the end he missed a block-out assignment. When they got the rebound, he had another opportunity at the end of the game and he was kind of shaking his head. He just didn't have it tonight. We dodged one, there's no question. We can't afford to have him especially and our other guys be in that situation where they've got to be locked in totally.


    Q. You mentioned that you limited LeBron's open opportunities, what specifically were you doing to achieve that?

    Coach Flip Saunders: We'll have to watch the tape on that.
  2. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    May 21, 2007

    Richard Hamilton

    DETROIT, MICHIGAN: Game One

    Q. I'd just like to ask you what you did defensively to hold LeBron down, and what kind of job you thought that Tayshaun did primarily.

    Richard Hamilton: Well, I think that coming into the game tonight, LeBron is a big part of what they do, and we can't just depend on one man guarding him, so what we try to do is play him as five. When he tried to go to the basket, guys did a great job of helping out. One of the key things is guys didn't shoot no free throws.


    Q. It seemed in the first half that everybody was deferring to you, was that the plan? Obviously you carried the team in the first half offensively.

    Richard Hamilton: Not at all. I think in the first half, you know, I just seen that we had a lot of wide-open shots but we was also turning the ball over. We had 11 turnovers. I just wanted to try to keep the team in the game, try to offensively and defensively. My guys did an excellent job of setting screens and creating a play and making a play. I was just hoping second half we'd get on track. We stayed in the game, once Sheed gets going, one Chauncey gets going, then I like our chances.


    Q. What did you guys talk about at halftime because you came out on a 17-to-6 run. That really changed the momentum of this game.

    Richard Hamilton: Well, we wasn't really trusting each other. Like I said, the first half we was keeping the ball on one side of the floor, they was trapping Chauncey and we can't swinging the ball quick enough. Second half we had to pepper the ball. As soon as you got the ball, if you ain't got a shot, give it up and make a cut. We had a lot of wide open looks coming into the second half, and I think that was the key.


    Q. Could you talk a little bit about Chauncey down the stretch. Earlier on he was struggling making shots but when you guys needed some buckets he was able to deliver.

    Richard Hamilton: The one thing that I love about Chauncey, regardless of how the game is going, he can be 0-for-20, I know in the last three, four minutes of the game he's still the same player. He's never rattled, he's always, "I want to make the great play. "

    He's still the one to lead us, so I have no worries. Those last couple minutes is a new game for him.


    Q. Give us a description of what Tayshaun's wing span is like and what it's like to face that.

    Richard Hamilton: Like I said, Tay is 6'9" and over a 7'0" wing span. He's long. The great thing about him, he's quick, he's athletic, he can get to the ball real quick, make up a lot of ground real quick. We try to use that to our advantage.


    Q. Were you surprised that LeBron passed up that last shot and passed the ball to Donyell Marshall?

    Richard Hamilton: Well, it was a great play. I think if he doesn't make that play, then he had a guy running out on him, they brought Donyell Marshall in the game for that point, to try to get a three-point shot. We knew that. We kind of made the mistake of allowing Donyell to get a wide-open three-point shot, but it was a great pass.


    Q. Just talk about the defensive effort in the second half. You guys seemed to really ratchet up the defense.

    Richard Hamilton: Well, we just had to knuckle down a little bit. We was allowing them to do what they want, our bigs got in foul trouble, we had a lot of offensive rebounds and we knew that coming into the game. We tried to limit the opportunities to get one shot and hopefully try to rebound and push it, and hopefully make our defense feed our offense, and I think we did a good job of that.


    Q. You get Game 1, how important is that, and do you feel like you escaped with one here today?

    Richard Hamilton: Well, we didn't play our best by any means necessary. We came in the locker room after the game and we felt as though we didn't play well at all and still got a win, and that's great. I love that. I'll live with that. If our defense can win games, then I love our chances. If our offense and the ball ain't going to go in sometimes, that's expected. But when our defense wins game, I'll live with that every day.


    Q. In the second half it seemed there was a conscious effort for you guys to try to get Chris Weber into a flow, a lot of passes to him at that point. Talk a little bit about that aspect of the game tonight.

    Richard Hamilton: I think in the second half, I told Webber at halftime, I said, "Be aggressive. When I come off a screen I'm going to find you and you can attack. Go right into your move." And I knew with me coming off of screens that they wasn't going to keep allowing me to keep coming off and shoot, so I knew I had to make a play.

    He's got great hands. No matter how fast or how slow I throw it to him, he's going to catch the ball. He made the plays, and we needed that in the second half.
  3. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    May 21, 2007

    Mike Brown

    DETROIT, MICHIGAN: Game One

    Coach Mike Brown: What a game. We felt that for the most part we came in and we tried to execute on both ends of the floor and do the necessary things to get a win, and I thought our guys did that. We had a couple of breakdowns during the course of the ballgame that cost us and cost us big when we broke down.

    It's one game. We understand it's one game. It's going to be a long series, but we have to be better for a longer period of time than what we were tonight. That's a very, very good basketball team in the Pistons, and if you expect to beat them, especially on their home floor, you've got to do your game plan, discipline -- you've got to have a game plan, discipline, and you've got to cover for one another for when things break down technically, you've got to cover for one another and just keep scrambling because if you relax or give somebody an open shot at any time during the course of the ballgame, they'll make you pay.

    But I'm proud of our guys' effort. I thought the effort was there. We just have to clean up a few things and do it for 48 minutes. I thought Z was terrific for us, inside, outside. He also rebounded the basketball, and Andy brought great energy to us off the bench. Obviously in a close game like this, we've got to concentrate a little bit better and knock down free throws because it can come down to one or two possessions at the end of the ballgame.

    It's tough, I've got to go back and watch the tape, but I don't know how LeBron plays 45 minutes and doesn't get a free throw attempt. I thought he went to the hole a couple of times. Obviously with the zero free throw attempts, he must need to go harder. So that's something that we can work on. I thought other than that he played a solid game. He was one assist away from a triple-double.

    They obviously had individual guys step up big for them. Rasheed was terrific, especially down the stretch. He had seven blocks today, and one thing our guys have to do, they have to attack his body because he's long, he's athletic and he's got a great feel and understanding for the game. So we've got to force the referee to make a foul call when we're driving to the basket because he's going to be there. So we've got to do a better job of attacking his body and not allowing him to get those seven blocks.

    Rip was also terrific. He was terrific the entire game, especially in that first half when we had a chance to create a little bit of separation. He kept them in there.


    Q. The first half Ilgauskas was doing lots of damage inside and the second half he seemed to move outside, was that part of the plan, or did the Pistons do something that caused that adjustment on your part?

    Coach Mike Brown: Well, Detroit did a nice job taking his post-ups away. They started to come on him a little bit more aggressively. They turned it up a notch defensively in terms of their aggressiveness, so what we did was we moved him around and put him in some pick-and-rolls because we knew they were going to be aggressive playing the pick-and-roll game. We're trying to defend the pick-and-roll game, which allowed him to pop for some jump shots.


    Q. Two things: The third quarter, again, they come out, start 7-0, 17-6 run. I think this is the third straight guys you guys have allowed that to happen. And the play with LeBron, was that designed to kick out to Donyell?

    Coach Mike Brown: We had to do a better job of coming out in the third quarter. We can't allow teams to go on huge runs. Obviously New Jersey did it in New Jersey and they did it here today. We just can't relax. We've got to understand that it's a 48-minute game and we've got to play with the same sense of urgency. We can't coast in to start the second half. We've got to do a better job in that area.

    The last play was for LeBron to decide. We had the floor space with shooters, we told him to go ahead and attack and make a play. If you get to the rim, go ahead and finish. If you feel like the defense is going to collapse, you've got to kick out. So it was his read.


    Q. Has LeBron ever played a game where he hasn't went to the free-throw line the full game?

    Coach Mike Brown: I don't know. Again, that's surprising to me that he had zero free throw attempts. I need to go back and watch the tape, but I don't think he took all jump shots tonight. A guy that big and strong and quick and athletic, the whole nine yards, for him not to be able to get a free throw attempt was pretty surprising.


    Q. What did you think of LeBron's decision, the decision that he made at the end of the game?

    Coach Mike Brown: You know, I have not gone back and watched the tape yet, but you know, looking back on the game, it looked like everybody had collapsed because there was nobody near Donyell. I mean, he could have sat and had a cup of coffee before he even shot the basketball. LeBron trusts his teammates, his teammates trust him, and if he's put in that situation, you've just got to step up and knock the shot down.


    Q. Rip Hamilton was just in here and he said they felt pretty good about their team defense on LeBron, that they didn't let him do what he wanted to do. How do you tell LeBron to get past the Pistons?

    Coach Mike Brown: He's going to continue being aggressive. He's driving the ball and being aggressive, even at times if you put the onus on the referee in terms of calling a charge or block at times. He's just got to be aggressive, and if he gets triple-teamed then he's got to make a pass, and there were times when he did get triple-teams, and that's why he was one assist away from a triple-double.


    Q. Just to follow up, is that the right shooting number of shots that you want him to get? I mean, 15 shots in a game like this, was that enough? Do you think there was a enough balance for your offense?

    Coach Mike Brown: Any time you've got LeBron James, if he shoots 20, 20-plus shots, you're okay with that. I thought, thinking back on the game, I need to go back and watch the tape, I thought he took some pretty good shots. I didn't think he forced anything. I don't mind him being more aggressive and more selfish at times. But when he does it's not about taking jump shots, it's about getting to the rim and putting the onus on the referee to make a charge or a block call.


    Q. Looking at the stats, 16 turnovers for Detroit, 7 for you, you win that battle, you win the points in the paint, the second-chance points, rebounding total. Do you feel this one slipped away, that it should have been a victory?

    Coach Mike Brown: Yeah, I felt we played well enough to win the ballgame, but there are a lot of things we can still clean up and get better at. We have to make sure we go into the next game with the same mindset knowing that we can beat these guys, whether it's at our place or their place, but it's not going to be easy. They're not going to say, hey, come take this one. We're going to have to earn it because it's a tough, veteran team. There are a lot of areas that we'll be able to clean up after watching the tape and hopefully it'll help us play a little better and help us get a win the next time-out.


    Q. You guys really reined in Chauncey Billups for four quarters, what was he able to do at the end of the game to hit some low shots?

    Coach Mike Brown: Well, I know when he hit the last three, we didn't do what we were supposed to do defensively. Rip Hamilton drove the basketball, and we had two guys run at him. Any time you commit -- you have a guy on the ball and then you have two guys coming to help, that's three committed to the basketball, then you're backside is going to be real short. You know, so we broke down with our game plan, discipline, on that shot when Chauncey hit the three. Rip made a tough pass to Tayshaun in the corner, Tayshaun made the right pass to Chauncey at the top of the floor and Chauncey knocked down a shot.
  4. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    May 21, 2007

    King James

    DETROIT, MICHIGAN: Game One

    Q. I know you say that you're a football player, but do you think football players would get some fouls?

    King James: (Laughing) It was definitely a physical game tonight. You know, fouls were called at times and weren't called at times. You know, this is what it's about. You know, you can't look to get fouls and you've got to try to be as aggressive as possible.


    Q. The last play there, Coach said that was kind of a read-react for you. Did you feel that you didn't have a shot at the layup and that's why you kicked it out to Donyell for the shot?

    King James: No, I go for the winning play. If two guys come at you and your teammate is open, then give it up. Simple as that.


    Q. As a franchise player, how do you justify only taking three shots in the fourth quarter of a pretty tight game? Do you think the fact you didn't go to the free-throw line tonight is maybe a statement on your aggressiveness or lack thereof?

    King James: No, you've just got to take what's there. It's not about taking a high volume of shots, it's about trying to win the basketball game. You've got to take what's there. We had an opportunity to me with me taking three shots in the fourth quarter. We game is not solely on taking a lot of shots. I'm going to continue to say that. That's the only answer I can give you. We had an opportunity to win.


    Q. Coach said that a couple of adjustments need to be made. You played pretty well as a team overall, got away at the end. Does anything stand out in your mind, adjustments to make for Game 2?

    King James: We definitely played pretty well. Both teams are going to make adjustments, you just do that in the playoffs. But as a whole we played pretty well. You can't ask for nothing more than what we did tonight. We always want to win the ballgame, but we always say if we play as hard as we did tonight for 48 minutes, like we did, we're not satisfied but we can look back and say, okay, we're okay with this loss tonight.


    Q. Third quarter, again, you guys fell behind 7-0, I think they started with a run, there was a 17-6 run before it settled down. It's the third game in a row. What seems to be the problem coming out of the locker room at halftime with you guys?

    King James: Not sure. It's just something that we've got to work on and get better at. At times we look to take too many jump shots to start the third quarter instead of attacking.

    Definitely with a team like Detroit that's very efficient on the offensive end, we've got to know how to pick your poison at times, and if there's a jump shot that's open, take your shot.


    Q. What does it feel like to have a team play defense against you and not be able to do what you're normally used to?

    King James: They played great. I mean, their defensive mindset is very good. But for me, I just -- you just take what's there. You know, if you get a good look at it, you go for it. If not you kick it to a teammate. Simple as that.
  5. jammertime

    jammertime Starter 1x Fantasy Champion Forum Donor

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    Wow, what service. Thanks Roscoe!
  6. roscoe36

    roscoe36 All-Star Administrator

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    I like to scoop the newspapers. :)
  7. TaS

    TaS All-Star Forum Donor

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    Coach Brown really said something like this, which I thought was a funny slip up.

    "We've got to understand that it's a 40-minute game... uhh... 48-minute game and we've got to play with the same sense of urgency. We can't coast in to start the second half. We've got to do a better job in that area."
  8. aurora

    aurora Bench Warmer

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    Yeah. Fantastic to be able to read all this nearly immediately after the game. First rate, Roscoe. Just the best.

    I thought Flip's answers were right on with how the game felt and looked to me. I wrote an "I'm all frustrated" post in the game thread. But my frustration is exactly what Flip said here: when our Pistons stop playing out of their strength, which is team basketball and running their offense, and start playing one-on-one basketball. I hope they can keep on track in this series in that particular way.

    I feel like that is our biggest Achilles heel that a weaker team can exploit when we lapse into it. Also, we cannot beat Spurs and maybe not Utah with a series full of lapses in mental discipline. Utah stays on task and is quite methodical about it, the Spurs, well, the Spurs are relentlessly on task! I just want us to play our game and not let these teams push us around for a few quarters out of some self-inflicted mental drifting problem.

    FOCUS!!! FOCUS!!! RUN THE OFFENSE!!! GO PISTONS!!!
  9. Warthog

    Warthog Bench Warmer

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    haha mike brown already busted out the 'what a game' !!!! i can't wait to do another impersonation press conference ;D

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