Potent Quotables - Celtics 95 - Cavs 89; Mike Brown, LeBron, Shaq

HEAD COACH MIKE BROWN
(On tonight's game): 
"You have to give Boston a lot of credit. They did an outstanding job in the first half of withstanding the punch that we threw. They bounced back the right way by defending the strong side of the court very well. For a stretch in the first half, we didn't get the ball across the floor and took too many jump shots. Defensively, one of our staples is to contest shots and for a stretch in the first half, we didn't contest shots, especially transition three-pointers. We have to do a better job on that."

(On Shaq's performance tonight): 
"He is going to help us a lot. At the beginning of the game, he was going good and we were going good. It's going to be a feel by me as to how many minutes we are going to play him."

LEBRON JAMES
(On struggling to score in stretches tonight): 
"First of all they are a good team. Boston is a great team. They took us out of a lot of our sets that we have been working on in practice. They made us get into a lot of "hot" situations, meaning late clock and a lot of one on one basketball. They are a really good defensive team and they did get us out of a lot of our sets when we went down in the second quarter or in the fourth a little bit."

(On if tonight was a measurement of early progress):
"You want to try and see what you have been working on and how you measure up against some of the better teams early in the season. I think we all can say that we probably will see each other later in the season or into the postseason...we will be around. It was fun. It was exciting. It was a great way for the NBA to start the season back up with two powerhouse teams. It just so happened that one team had to lose."

(On how Shaq did in his first game as a Cavalier): 
"I think he did O.K. We don't want to look too much into the first game because it's really a transition period for ourselves offensively and defensively. But I think that in the time that he was out there he was dominant and he looked well. (He was) a little short on some of the shots that he usually makes, which I know he was a little mad about, but he will be alright."

(On which side of the ball takes more time to adjust with new players): 
"A little bit of both. You can get away with it on defense a little bit more because if you play hard and you talk through certain situations, you can kind of fly around and get through it on defense. On offense, if everybody is not on the same page you can get into a lot "hot" situations...where you get down in the clock and it's back to one on one basketball. We want to get into our sets early where we have options early in the clock."


SHAQUILLE O'NEAL
(On getting better after tonight's game): 
"We just have to keep at it. You can't win a championship in the first game. We would have liked to start off 1-0, but there are plenty of games left. We'll be fine...we have to get back at it tomorrow. We just have to try and even it up tomorrow."

(On the crowd and atmosphere early): 
"It was excellent. Our fans were into it. We came out with an impressive start. We had some mental mistakes. You really can't have mental mistakes against a good, veteran team like Boston."

(On what it'll take to get the offense going): 
"We just have to do the little things: take care of the ball, set screens, rebound and be where we're supposed to be. I like our work ethic in practice. We work at it every day. We'll be fine."

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