courtesy of Jack Alden
|Related pages||"Well, it was a heck of a college basketball game. I was not pleased with the way we played, even in the first half. They shoot 35%, and we shoot 55 or 56. They have 12 turnover, I think, to our six. And we're up five, because we were just stupid on the offensive end of the floor. It was a frustrating game. I told Quinn that I'm not so sure the best team won tonight, because I thought they played better than we did. But we have two seniors, Nick Collison and Kirk Hinrich, who were just sensational. And the other guys have got to decide that they're going to start being players, too. Because that was... I just better shut up. I'm very pleased to win. Again, I'm not so sure that they didn't outplay us. We had breakdowns offensively, defensively, guys not going where they're supposed to go. Jeff Graves has got to decide he's going to start being a player and stop sitting over there with me. I don't need another assistant coach. And Aaron Miles... I don't give a blankety-blank about shooting the dadgum basketball, but you can't have six frickin' turnovers in a game like that. I'm very pleased to win; let's get the hell out of town.
"In the first half they had 12 points on second shot opportunities, and we had two. They have 38 rebounds to our 29. But again, Nick Collison and Kirk Hinrich.... Very seldom do I say just two of our guys played, but those two guys were sensational. And Michael Lee--I mean birthday boy was bigtime for us as well and came in and made some bigtime plays, made some bigtime free throws for us, and did a nice job defensively. But they cut it to one I think at one point. We were in a set play for Nick. Nick got it inside, threw it back outside to Kirk, and Kirk made a three. And I thought that was a huge play for us as well.
(About the start) "Well six straight possessions, we have three turnovers and three terrible shots. And we can't be the kind of basketball team we say we want to be and play like that. But, they're in good spirits right now. I had already made up my mind that the next practice was going to be at 6:00 AM tomorrow morning. But I love our guts and stepping up to the free throw line and making the plays there at the end. I told them I was thinking about it (still having practice at 6:00 AM) until after the press conference.
(Max begins to ask about Jeff Graves.) "Max, don't even go there. There's nothing positive I'm going to say about Jeff Graves or Aaron Miles tonight, so just leave it alone.
"Well, Michael was really good, and I'll say that over and over. First play we put in Bryant, he was supposed to set a screen for Keith, and he doesn't do that. Next, well.... Again, Kirk Hinrich, Nick Collison, Michael Lee. I ain't saying anything positive about anyone else, and I ain't saying positive about the coach either.
"You know, it was amazing, because he (Clemons) made some of those shots and I said, 'Darn, I thought we defended him pretty doggone well.' But he made of bunch of them. Ricky Paulding, Arthur Johnson, Ricky Clemons. Even with Arthur in foul trouble, he was a load for us inside. It was a weird game, I think. At one time we almost get the rebound. I thought we had it and they throw it back out and make a three. Another time we come down and miss a dead layup, and they go down and make a three. So I was beginning to wonder if it was my night tonight. I thought it was going to be the last night I would ever wear this pink tie in my history.
"I’m going to enjoy this one, the end result. I did like our toughness with Michael. Bryant made one of two (free throws in the last minute); Michael made three of four when he went to the line. I love that toughness, stepping up to the free throw line at the end.”
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