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“We can play and we can win,” and more quotes from the Mavericks’ win over the Thunder

Straight from the Mavericks mouths!

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Dallas Mavericks Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Rick Carlisle

How is Luka Doncic able to put up such good offensive numbers at just age 19?

He’s got a good feel for the game and he reads situations well. He knows that before the game is over that he will have the ball in his hands enough and he plays beyond his years in terms of reading things, mixing aggression, and unselfishness.

How were you able to hold the Thunder under 100 points?

We started out the game playing extremely hard. Guys were fighting their butts off. The run at the end of the half was disappointing but at halftime we said hey we still won the quarter by I think it was 11.

We just had to concentrate on getting out of the locker room and picking it back up and they did. We were even in the third and in the fourth we won it by three. They’re fighting hard. There’s nothing easy about playing in this league. There’s nothing easy about playing (Oklahoma City).

They’ve won seven games in a row so give the players credit. They hung together and fought their tails off.

Seventeen minutes for Harrison Barnes, was it just tough to get him back into the flow of the game?

I left him in in the first quarter because I felt like he could play without fouling. I didn’t see what happened but there was a play off the ball opposite our bench and he got called for his third (foul) right away.

When that happens that’s my responsibility and I blew it. His third quarter was great. He was aggressive, made things happen, and hit a big three. He drove and got to the free throw line a couple of times.

Down the stretch I was just going by feel and he just ended up finishing with Kleber who had a good game as well. The early fouls were the challenge.

Luka Doncic

How is the knee feeling? Will it affect your availability going forward?

It was a muscle so it’s going to swell tomorrow. No I don’t think so. (I’ll) just get treatment on it and get better.

Do you let the game come to you even if you aren’t getting shots early in the game?

“I don’t plan nothing for the game. It just depends how I feel, if somebody else is hot, it just depends how the game goes.”

You set a new career-high in assists tonight; what allowed your passing to be so successful tonight?

“That was a part of the game that we wanted to be a key part because we share the ball really good. Like I said, I saw some open men and I passed it.”

How will y’all continue with this momentum into the next game?

“With our defense. When we play good defense that’s when we can go in on offense so that’s a real key for us.”

Maxi Kleber

Did you guys think that you definitely had to get this win tonight?

“Games like this tonight, coming back from the last loss that we had are big time because we prove first of all that we can play and we can win. Second of all we prove that we can mentally and we don’t get in another losing streak.

“We play hard every game and if we play like we did today, especially on defense, we give ourselves a better chance to stay in games .”

You had a game high plus 20 tonight, what factored into that?

“I guess it’s just lucky me tonight. You know it’s just who you’re on the court with and obviously some luck probably helped.”

Do you try to always go for those blocks like you did tonight?

“I’m trying to go for every block. If I see I can go there or I should help, even if sometimes it’s the wrong decision and I’m too late, if I call myself a defender and a rim protector I have to go for it. “

Do people underestimate that part of your game?

“Sometimes, but sometimes also I overestimate myself defensively (laughter) so it happens sometimes.”