I've got to get these guys ready to play. It's pretty clear. We had some struggles early. We were not the team we've been the past two weeks and I take a great deal of responsibility for that. I gotta do a better job getting ready for game 2.
On Justin Anderson's lack of playing time during the first three quarters
We were playing veterans. We played veterans predominantly during the Utah game, which was the biggest game of the year. He's obviously going to more involved going forward. I loved the way he finished the game. It's a situation now where we gotta get enough healthy bodies. He'll be a big part of it, no doubt about it.
On the significance of this loss
It's one game. It's 1-0. I think that's one thing we have to take away from this. We have to be a heck of a lot better in game 2. It's my responsibility to get these guys ready to play.
On the core reason behind the lack of shot making
I'd have to look at the tape to give you an accurate assessment of that. I know we missed some that we felt were good looks. I thought it deflated us early. That can't happen. It's part of playoff basketball where you have to stay the course. I'll look at it. We'll assess it. We know we can get better shots. Look, we're playing a great team. There's no question about that. A very well coached team, an elite team. We've gotta be better from the beginning of the game to the very end.
On the lack of rebounding
We've gotta do better. They're big, they're strong, and they're aggressive—they come. They're sending two or three guys. It's an area where we've gotta make up some ground. The deficit was pretty pronounced during the season. Tonight it was even greater. I have to look at how those things happen. Whether it was block outs that they worked through to get rebounds or was it defensive rotations that took bodies out of position.
On Salah Mejri being inserted into the starting lineup
Mejri's numbers have been really really good in recent games. He had very good games against Oklahoma. We decided to go with him from the start. You know, it's a new experience for him being in the NBA playoffs. Everyone's gotta do better.
On finding success outside of Dirk
We have to see how many shots were high quality shots that were missed. If that's the case, we have to stay the course. We had some problems with turnovers too. 13 turnovers for 16 points doesn't sound like a big number, but we had a lot in the first half where they built up a big lead. Tempo is consideration and we'll look at that as well.
On the significance of JJ Barea's injury
I'm very very concerned. I think something happened. I don't think it was something where it was just tight. I think something happened. We'll have more information tomorrow. He's a very very important guy, but if he can't go. Ray, Deron and Harris have to take up that slack. It's been a next man up proposition all year long. We've been down bodies all year and this is no different.
On the rebounding issue
If you shoot 20 something percent and they shoot close to 50, there's a lot more to get on their end. Still we should have grabbed a couple more rebounds in the first half there were multiple possessions where they got multiple offensive rebounds. We've got to be in there battling. Obviously their frontline is bigger and more athletic. We've gotta have everyone in there securing a rebound.
On how the team reacts to a big loss
We've got to show pride. We got embarrassed tonight. We couldn't get anything going on the offensive end. We just couldn't get any stops there for awhile. When your offense isn't going, you've got to get back, buckle down and get some rebounds. We didn't do either. We'll look at some stuff tomorrow. We've got to play hard; we've got to compete. We've obviously got some guys banged up, but whoever is out there has got to play better and play harder.
On the defense leading to offense
I thought we had some good looks. I can remember at least five or six wide open looks where there was no one around us. There was lid on the basket on our side. That's unfortunate. We've just got to step into it. They're obviously very athletic and close space very quickly. We've got to shoot. If there's an open shot early in the clock, we've got to take it, because there might not be another with under five or six seconds on the clock.
On the team not being ready to play
We started off missing a couple shots. We got a little discouraged I think instead of getting back, getting stops and picking up full and making life hard on them. We just went back into a shell. It's disappointing. The only positve is that it's one game. If you lose by two or if you lose by 50, it's only one game. We've got another chance to steal one here on Monday night.