Postgame Quotes – November 12, 2017

DETROIT PISTONS HEAD COACH STAN VAN GUNDY:  (On the win): “I just said other than the Warriors win this is our best win. I thought they played well. That was a hell of a basketball game. I mean I’m sure you guys watching it understand what I mean; that was a hell of a game. A lot of back and forth, we finally got a little space in the fourth quarter, but that was a hell of a basketball game. And look, you got to give them a lot of credit coming off five games out west and coming here from Utah on Friday, that is a really tough scheduling thing and so maybe they ran out of gas a little bit too, but all I know is our guys got down I think double figures in the second half and just kept playing, kept fighting, kept staying with the game. It was a game of a lot of runs and I was really proud of our guys especially the way they shot the ball early in the game, my God.” 

(On controlling Miami’s shooting): “Well yeah, we made some mistakes. We were getting two guys on the ball a little bit too much and they were able to throw the ball back. I also thought we probably went under on too many hand offs and that hurt us. And our closes weren’t as good as they could’ve been. I thought our guys made good adjustments in the second half.” 

DETROIT PISTONS GUARD LUKE KENNARD:  (On if he’s gotten a sense of what life in the NBA is like): “Yeah, you know, I’ve definitely got a glimpse of what it’s about. It’s a league where you just have to be ready at any time. That’s just been my mentality going into everything, just always being ready when my number is called.” 

(On how it felt to make big plays tonight): “It feels great. We won five straight at home, can’t get much better than that honestly. I thought we really stayed poised tonight, we really stayed together. We stayed connected. We had guys that made plays all around the court. Everybody made an impact when they got in and that’s what we needed.” 

DETROIT PISTONS GUARD REGGIE JACKSON: (On Luke Kennard’s performance): “Cold-hand Luke. Cool, calm and collected. He played well tonight. He played big for us. I think we all see it plus-21. He definitely contributed a lot. He’s just very patient, for a rookie it’s hard to really speed him up and he plays at his own pace. That’s one thing, I told him I definitely, that’s what I look at most about him you can’t really speed him up and his confidence. He played well tonight. I was just proud of the way the team, the way we scrapped this and fought this one out. The second unit definitely picked us up in the third and especially in the fourth, got us going.” 

(On if this is as satisfying of a win as the team has had this season): “Yeah. It’s something we talked about, especially I think people were saying, going from the hunter to somewhat of the hunted. Even though it’s early in the season people are going to be coming out giving us some of their best shots. They played extremely well, they moved the ball. They were attacking downhill, making that lob threat. When they come in with Kelly Olynyk, they got a guy who can space the floor. They can play many ways and they have guards that can attack and shoot. They made it very difficult on us, I think they hit like seven threes in the first quarter. They felt confident, they were good. Like I said, I’m just happy the way that it was a back and forth game, but we were able to make a run finally and come out with a win.” 

MIAMI HEAT HEAD COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA: (On the Pistons finding their way in the second half and what changed): “Well, probably was a pace that was a little more appealing to them, than to us.  We know what our identity is and as much as it looked like we could play that kind of game in the first half, a 48-minute game really has to be on our terms—the pace.  It was just a little bit too up and down, and they were able to really capitalize in some numbers situations, to open 3s and they went on a roll on those. Seems like every time we were in any kind of numbers disadvantage, they also capitalized on those 3s and made us pay for them.” 

(On if the Pistons being +15 on the boards was a major impact): “Yeah it’s a real possession team.  If we’re not taking care of the basketball, if we’re not playing at the appropriate pace, if we’re not controlling the glass.  It simply hasn’t been a formula for success for us and I think we’ve learned a lot about our team so far in 13 games, and we’ve certainly learned on this road trip.  But we were not able to dictate and impose our style on this game, pretty much all across the board. 

 (On if he liked the looks in the second half): “It was a lot different in the second half.  There weren’t as many inside-out.  You have to credit them, they flattened us out.  We weren’t able to get into the paint as much, we didn’t have any kind of inside-out transition 3s.  So they ended the clock variety, and that’s not really our kind of deal.  So, again, it’s that execution, dealing with detail but also playing at a pace that’s most appropriate for us.” 

MIAMI HEAT GUARD DION WAITERS: (On road trip): “We grew, we took steps forward, we got better as a team. You know it’s early, we have a chance to make corrections right now while it’s early. Like I said, just keep moving forward, stay positive. We went 3-3 on the road, which is a tough environment. I’m feeling really good about two games. It’s tough to win in this league. As long as we’re doing it as a team and we’re getting better and we’re moving in the right direction I’m fine with that.”

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