Game 1: Pelicans-Grizzlies Postgame Quotes 10/18/17

Wednesday, October 18, 2017 FedExForum, Memphis, TN


On tonight’s game:

“I thought we started the first quarter playing the way we should. I thought we had good ball movement. We got good shots. From there on out I thought that our ball movement wasn’t very good. We had eight assists in the first quarter, then we had seven the rest of the way. That’s telling me we didn’t have very good ball movement for the rest of the game – too many easy drives. We didn’t come up. It wasn’t 50/50 ball. It was 80/20 ball, so we have to get our share of those balls, and we didn’t do that. I just thought our ball movement wasn’t very good at all.”

On the Pelicans’ system:

“I think we need to tweak the system some, obviously, but I just thought that we played a little bit too much in isolation, and they’re a very good defensive team. If you’re going to play isolation basketball, they load up and they take away all the driving lanes, so we have to do that by keeping our spacing on the floor and making basket cuts and then relocating on the floor.”

On the Grizzlies’ new look:

“I think they’re going to shoot more threes than they’ve ever shot. They’ve never been a team that shot a lot of threes, but I think with [Marc] Gasol and what he did last year – and Michael Conley has had that ability since he came in the league, and Chandler Parsons and guys like that. I think you’ll see them shoot more threes than they have in the past. But they’re still a grind it out team. They’re still going to get at you defensively, and that’s why it’s really important to have good ball movement.”


On the standing ovation:

“I had so many jitters in my body – butterflies –I mean whatever you want to call it. I was a little nervous. I’m glad they got that over with. It’s a lot of love from the city, a lot of love from the fans. I appreciate that. I’m kind of hurt we lost. I wish we could have had a better outing and a better result for today’s game, but for the most part, a huge respect for the organization.”

On the tribute video:

“Yeah, it kind of caught me by surprise. I looked at the thing and didn’t realize I was that old. I was looking at those young TA highlights but yeah it was all special, a special moment, and like I said, I thank the organization for even just having me in their hearts. Much love to them.”

On the Bongo Lady wearing his jersey:

“Bongo lady – that’s my lady. She’s been TA ride or die… so much love to the bongo lady. Big shout out to the bongo lady.”

On if it felt strange not having on a white uniform:

“Yeah, I pretty much knew all the plays and knew what they were going to run, but they executed well. They played well, and we’ll see them again some time down the season and hopefully get a better outcome.”

On Dillon Brooks:

“Yeah, Dillon Brooks has got a lot of TA in him. He’s a weapon, I tell you that. We got to be [more] alert towards him next time. That last game he had (preseason), it wasn’t a fluke. He is a solid player in this league.”


On losing JaMychal Green early:

“Next man up. I thought Jarell (Martin) handled it very well, he had a great preseason. I had total confidence in getting him in there. Other guys just had to step up around him. We had Marc (Gasol) in foul trouble. Everything wasn’t perfect but our guys kept figuring it out, kept coming up with solutions, and whoever I put in next was always ready to go.”

On Dillon Brooks:

“I don’t expect it, but it’s not like it was a surprise to me. I just know that he’s going to have an impact on the game whether he’s scoring or not. I’ve just got a lot of confidence in him.”

“He’s ready. He had four game winners last year at Oregon. He was Pac-12 Player of the Year. He’s one of those guys that came in ready to go. Obviously, we’ve got some things we want to work on with him and develop, but I trust him in a game.”

On the defense after the first quarter:

“We got into the airspace better. I thought we gave them too much room on three-point shooters and it really got rolling in there in the first quarter. But I thought we really made the adjustment well and got up into them. Then we really tried to keep that pace up and just tried to keep coming at them, keep coming at them in waves and hopefully our conditioning level would kick in.”

On JaMychal’s injury:

“He’s going to get checked out tomorrow so we’ve got to wait and see.”

“Absolutely, but at the end of the day you can’t wallow in that. That’s good adversity for us to have to be without him and if we have him we’ll be happy as heck. But we just take every situation as it is. We don’t weigh into if it’s good or bad, we just learn from it and keep moving forward.”

On expectations from the bench:

“Yeah, I’ve got a lot of confidence in those guys. It was good to see Chandler (Parsons) get his feet wet and see the ball go in. I thought he did an excellent job on Anthony Davis in the time that he had him. Obviously those guys shared the ball and shared the game. Either one of those guys can get going. Rio (Mario Chalmers) was 1-for-9, but we know Rio is capable of having big nights. I was just happy to see him back after 18 months since that guy played in a real NBA game. I’m really proud of him and the way he had to resolve and stay with it and really committed to our program. He got his weight down and fought to get here, so I’ve got a feeling he’s going to be just fine before it’s all said and done.”

On opening night and Tony Allen’s tribute:

“Opening nights are already one of those adrenaline filled evenings without Tony Allen, so there’s a lot of emotions when he’s in the building, obviously. The best part about it is I feel like it’s a good vibe between everybody right now. There’s no animosity or any of that stuff that can happen in free agency. I thought Robert Pera did the right thing in honoring him by telling him he is retiring his jersey, because it’s well deserved. But it’s weird seeing him in another uniform. I know it was weird for Marc, Mike (Conley), and the guys that have played with him for a long time. Obviously, he’ll be missed and he deserves every tribute that they can give him.”

On Chandler Parsons:

“Honestly, I wouldn’t know. I just know that it’s rust. All of it adds up to rust. He’s in a tough spot because everything he does you can hear the crowd. If he does well its ‘hey’, if he does bad it’s ‘boo’ and it’s not easy to be in that spot. But they’ve got to understand that no one has to be hurt. He’s not a faker, this isn’t a game when it comes to his knee. He’s had some serious stuff there. Anybody that’s had those kind of injuries can tell you it’s not like you’re going to just jump out there and everything is going to be great. But he helped us win tonight and that’s what I’m more concerned with, is that he got out there and contributed and just played within himself and helped our team. He’s another guy I’m happy to see running around on the court.”


On the game:

“We were really consistent defensively. We were not perfect by any means, but we were consistent with our effort and very unselfish. That, to me, is the most important thing. We’re going to make mistakes, but if we’re unselfish and we work together, we can improve. You can’t work through selfishness. That just doesn’t happen.”

On Dillon Brooks:

“He doesn’t make many mistakes, and that’s really good. He’s not afraid to shoot it and has a great instinct for the game. On both ends of the floor, he uses his body defensively. Really good.”

On the crowd booing Chandler Parsons:

“I’m not happy with that at all. It’s our players. We’ve got to support our players. Every single one of us. I don’t think people understand. I know we are professional basketball players and all, but the support, and what that means to us when we’re out there… because, he’s one of us. Booing Chandler is just like booing Mike (Conley) or booing myself. We are one team. I don’t know what’s going through people’s minds, but we need to support him. And trust me, he’s going to play a lot better if you support him. If you boo him, it’s not going to help the situation much. It’s the first game, so I think it’s always better when the crowd supports you and it just gives you a better feeling of course.”

On Chandler Parsons having the support of the team:

“I don’t see any other way. I don’t care who’s out there, you need to support them because those guys go through everything. I know what the perception from the outside may be and all, but he’s here, he’s with us, he cares, and he wants to play well. That’s all I care about. And he wants to win, so as long as he cares about the team, he’s doing the right things and he has my full support.”

On his health:

“I feel really good. The first couple of games back for the ankle were not great in terms of timing and rhythm and things like that because I had to sit out for 10 days. But playing all summer for the national team, and working on all the things we worked on allowed me to be in great shape throughout the whole season.”


On his first regular season game:

“I was just staying aggressive and just taking the shots where they come.”

On having fun playing the game:

“It was really fun. Especially with these guys, they made it feel like home and they never got at me for a shot I took. They just kept telling me to keep going.”

On any nerves behind playing his first game in the NBA:

“On the post fade away, I was a little scared. I was like, ‘I’ve got to make this shot or Coach Fiz is taking me out.’ But it just felt natural and I just took what the defense gave me, and my teammates just kept giving me the ball.”

On having a large impact on the game:

“I try to give an impact in the game on the defensive end or on the offensive end. I just try to find a way to impact the game. That’s what Coach always tells me, ‘Just find a way to impact the game.’ I felt like I did pretty well on both sides and I was just giving it up for my team.”

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