Postgame quotes and notes: Blazers 96, Spurs 93
Official postgame quotes and notes following the Portland Trail Blazers’ 96-93 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Thursday evening at the Rose Garden.
BLAZERS POST GAME QUOTES
Monday, Feb. 4, 2010 – Final Score: Portland 96, San Antonio 93
COACH NATE McMILLAN
“When things go wrong or you’re not winning, there are going to be people who look for someone to blame. As far as LaMarcus, he is doing the things we need him to do. He’s being aggressive down there establishing a post up for us. For him to play 41 minutes tonight on a back to back and play against Tim and those guys who are just banging him, I think you’re seeing growth from LaMarcus. He’s been good. We needed him to step up on both ends of the court. He’s rebounding and scoring and had a great night tonight.”
On Martell’s game and late play:
“I thought Martell- again, we’re seeing some growth with these guys. For Martell to step up and hit those free throws down the stretch is big when he has not been in that position. Being in the game late, stepping up and knocking down four free throws, just being calm in that situation. I thought the team in the last five minutes started to calm down and worked their way back in the game down the stretch. We made plays to win this game.”
“I think it’s a big win. It’s a big win because, as I said, we have so many moving pieces. What I mean by that – with the different rotations and the different lineups and guys being out, every night we’re trying to put the guys out there that are working and the combinations that are working. After just getting embarrassed last night in Utah, I thought we bounced back tonight and got this game against a team that we needed to protect home court [against]. They are a good team. Tony Parker was fresh. We stayed with our gameplan. He got off to a good start but we didn’t go crazy. We did a better job in the second half of keeping those guys in front of us and making them shoot over the top.
“We talk about our three Cs and I thought we did that tonight, just being calm and clear about what we want to do and staying with it and being consistent with it. Good job, good win for us.”
39 field goals on 30 assists:
“We wanted to force the tempo. We wanted to push the ball. At time,s I think we hold on to the ball and we want to try to do something ourselves. I thought we got back to playing team basketball and moving the ball and making their defense move. We had a ton of assists doing that. That’s the way we need to play – good ball movement, pushing the ball, and when you’re open, shoot the ball.”
“It felt great, honestly it did. Fortunately I was in that position and my teammates find me. Great drive by Andre Miller to find Nic in the corner, Nic saw I was open on the wing and kicked it. I took the shot with confidence.”
“Glad we got that win and got that tiebreaker in case it counts for something down the road.”
On getting big wins
“You’ve got to be tenacious. You can’t have any letdown. A couple shots don’t go your way or you don’t get stops on defense, then you’ve got to keep your head up and take it down to the other end of the floor and don’t allow it to carry with us. We did that tonight and we walked out of here with this win.”
On making big free throws down the stretch:
“It’s funny. I had a conversation with coach at the beginning of the season and I told him that I want to be able to finish games, it doesn’t necessarily matter about starting, but finishing. He’s like, you know, if you’re going to be finishing games there might be situations where you’re on the free throw line for game winning free throws. I told him that’s where I want to be and tonight I got to prove that and it went my way.”
On Martell Webster:
“He was huge for us. He made big shots. We always tell him be patient because we always end up coming back to him. He’s too good of a shooter to not use him. He was patient and late in the game, he made some big shots for us.
Was this your strongest fourth quarter of the season?
“Yeah, definitely my strongest fourth quarter. I think I’ve had opportunities but I think that was my strongest fourth of finishing shots, getting rebounds, and then making the right passes. I’ve had some opportunities and I either missed the shots or I didn’t make the right pass, but tonight I did both.”
Portland 96, San Antonio 93
February 4, 2010
— Tonight marked the 98th consecutive Trail Blazers sellout at the Rose Garden (including playoffs), dating back to Dec. 21, 2007.
— The Trail Blazers have swept the series with the Spurs (three games) for the first time since 1996-97 and the fourth time in series history … Portland’s five-game win streak over San Antonio is its longest in the series since 1996-97 and is tied for its second-longest active streak against any team.
— Portland has swept San Antonio at home in back-to-back seasons (four games) for the first time since 1991-92 and 1992-93.
— Martell Webster made all five of his three-point tries tonight, a feat Brandon Roy also accomplished this season, Dec. 20 at Miami … It is Webster’s most career treys made in a game without a miss … Webster now ranks fifth in the league with 101 three-point makes this season.
— Seven of Martell Webster’s nine 20-point games this season have come since Jan. 2 … He scored in double figures for the 16th time in the past 19 games.
— LaMarcus Aldridge has now scored 20-plus points in eight of the last 11 games and 20 times overall this season … He recorded his 17th double-double of the year and second in a row, leading the team in rebounding for the 20th time this season.
— The Trail Blazers improved to 9-3 in the second game of back-to-backs this season, already equaling their win total in such games from last season (9-7).
— The Trail Blazers are now 4-3 this season in games decided by three points or less and 34-13 in such games since the beginning of the 2006-07 season.
— Portland improved to 18-3 at home this season when shooting at least 42.5% from the field.
— At 30-22, the Trail Blazers are just two games behind their 52-game pace from last season (32-20).
— Portland’s 19-11 mark against the West this season is third-best in the conference … The Trail Blazers improved to 13-9 against the other 10 teams in the West currently above .500.
— Juwan Howard scored in double figures for the 10th time this season, making all five of his attempts.
— Andre Miller surpassed the 30,000-minute mark for his career with his first nine minutes in tonight’s game … He passed out double digits in assists for the eighth time and recorded his fifth double-double in 2009-10.
— Portland overcame a double-digit deficit to win for the sixth time this season, all since Dec. 5 … Last year, the Trail Blazers won 18 games when trailing by double figures, the most by any team since 2002-03 (18, Phoenix).
— Portland’s 30 assists were its most since equaling that mark Nov. 11 at Minnesota … Portland assisted on 19 of its 23 first-half baskets.
— Portland held a 16-3 advantage in fastbreak scoring … The Trail Blazers scored nine fastbreak points in the first quarter alone.
— The Spurs’ six turnovers tied a season low and matched a season low by a Trail Blazers opponent … San Antonio turned the ball over just three times in the first three quarters.
SPURS POST GAME QUOTES
Monday, Feb. 4, 2010 – Final Score: Portland 96, San Antonio 93
COACH GREGG POPOVICH
“We turned it over down the stretch. Obviously, we handled the ball well all night and then turned it over down the stretch and didn’t shoot well. We were 4 for 17, really hurt us from the three, the combination of poor shooting and turnovers down the stretch gave us the loss.”
“This year we’ve lost to the Trail Blazers twice without Brandon Roy, we lost to Denver without Carmelo, we just haven’t played well and hit shots the last six minutes of the game or execute the way we need to…It’s not about getting cold, it’s a matter of executing and hitting shots, getting good looks and knocking them down. We had a wide-open look, no different than Martell’s wide-open look; he just knocked it down, good for him.”
“It was really tough for us. It was a huge game, the second game of a road trip after a win. It would’ve really helped our motivation and optimism. Now it puts a lot of pressure on the back end of the trip, so we’re going to have to go to LA and Denver with more pressure and responsibilities.”
ON MAKING LATE-GAME SHOTS
“That always helps, if down the stretch you miss the shots and they make them, it’s always a problem. But we didn’t turn the ball over in the whole game and down the stretch we made a couple ones, two bad shots, and they executed great and Webster’s shot was huge.”