Postgame quotes: Hornets 98, Blazers 97

Official postgame quotes following the Portland Trail Blazers’ 98-97 loss to the New Orleans Hornets on Monday at the Rose Garden.


Monday, Jan. 25, 2010 – Final Score: New Orleans 98, Portland 97

On late game struggles:
“We’re getting looks. Those shots we knock down to get ourselves back into games. We’re getting looks and we’ve got to just finish it off. When you get those opportunities in situations like that – we had matchups we wanted – you’ve got to knock down those shots.”

On last offensive possession:
“We needed to try to get to the basket and put Bayless in there to see if he could get to the rim, to spread the floor. It was designed for Bayless to just try to get to the basket. We had 3 seconds. We felt like we had time to get something going to the basket. Andre was having problems beating the one on one coverage and we just needed something quick to try to get to the rim.”

“Andre has done some good things. LaMarcus has done some good things in these couple of games. Bayless has done some good things. We had opportunities. ‘Dre had a single coverage down there that we didn’t make that shot. Juwan had a free throw jump shot that didn’t fall. When you get those opportunities… we had a couple of turnovers late, you’ve got to execute.

On how Paul got open look:
“I think somebody fell or he fell and there was a rotation and I think we lost him. Maybe two guys went to the ball and he was sitting there by himself. It happened so fast, I don’t recall how he got open like that.”

“We knew they were going to be aggressive. We came out the first quarter like we were dragging like we were still on the road. We finally got some defense in the game and were game to get control of this game. In the second half, we knew he [Chris Paul] was going to be aggressive trying to attack. He got the pick and roll game going a little bit. We had an opportunity here. We’ve got to get stops and then when we have opportunities to score, we’ve got to score. We missed a free throw late… we had opportunities at the basket.”

On the play of the bench:
“In a situation like this where, again, it felt like it was a road game; we knew that we were going to need the bench. That’s something that we talked at the start of the game, that I thought we looked like we were kind of flat in the locker room. The bench did what they needed to do, came out and brought some energy. I thought Nic was good in the few minutes that he played, Rudy, Bayless – those guys were good and they got us back in the game defensively. They got stops. They had a 16 point second quarter and we were able to take control of the game.”

“This is tough to lose a game like this, especially on your floor. These guys have battled all season long and we’re going to be in games like this. It’s going to be this way for, I think, the rest of this season where it’s going to be close. It’s going to come down to the stretch and we’re going to have to execute and be good in the fourth quarter. Of course it’s a frustrating loss.”

On last shot by Bayless:
“He got a good look at the hoop, he just didn’t knock it down. I told him just shoot the next one, you’ve got to stay confident.

What went wrong down the stretch:
“We just couldn’t make shots. We got great looks, great looks at the basket. It was just one of those things. You’ve got to fight through it, battle through it. I definitely tip my hat to my teammates because we were down big in the first half and we rallied back to get it back. Down the stretch, we couldn’t get any stops and Chris got open and knocked down that shot. That really hurt. There’s another game Wednesday so that’s where our minds are.”

“It definitely hurts. It hurts a lot. You’ve got to learn from it, but it definitely hurts tonight. We had the game in our hands and kind of let it slip away, but we’ll learn from it though. You’ve got to get stops down the stretch.”


Monday, Jan. 25, 2010 – Final Score: New Orleans 98, Portland 97

“That game had a little bit of everything. I thought the thing that I’m most proud of is that we had a lead because of a great start and then it tightened up. We had a lot of calls that against us that were difficult calls for us, but we handled it and we moved on and made some big plays when it was a back and forth game. I think our players showed a tremendous of mental toughness and belief in each other; to come back in a very difficult building, in a difficult place to play against a very good team and pull this out.

“They were terrific. Their energy at the start of the game was big…When we were down 8 and went with three of them, Darren, Marcus, and Chris; we went with it to try and zoom it up the floor, you get something going. Darren made a couple big plays out of that, we got some stops, and had a lot of foot quickness on the floor.”

“A great win on the road for us. It’s something that all those guys feel really good about…A lot of times a lot of teams would lose that lead and that could be the end of it for the night, but we were able to get ourselves righted a couple times throughout the game, just keep trying, keep playing and they made some big plays.”

“We just remained confident. We had our young guys come in and made some shots for us and it paid off for us in terms of being able to keep it close down the stretch and make some plays to win it in the end.”

“We’ve had to fight through some different things, but for the most part we’ve remained a pretty confident group, in terms of what our approach is every single night.”

“I think we’re finding ourselves in these games. We’re finding ourselves in positions where one or two plays would decide or determine the outcome of the game. I think that’s good especially going down the stretch. It’s something we’re comfortable with playing in the last second, the last minute, whatever it is; we’re confident we can be successful in those situations.”

“We talked about it the timeout, if they missed, not to call a timeout, just to push it at them. When I pushed it and I fell I saw D-West open, and me and him have done that time and time again where he hits that shot to win it. When I passed it to him I assumed he shot it. When I got up, he threw it to me and I knew I had to shoot it.”

“We’re used to this. We do this night in and night out. We don’t do any blowouts. We don’t believe in them. We don’t believe in blowing teams out. We like to play all game by five points or less, that’s how it’s been working. Every night is a close one.

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