The Cleveland Cavaliers and Washington Wizards played basketball. More accurately, the Wizards played three quarters of basketball and the Cavs played one quarter. After burying themselves with sloppy effort and poor defense, the Cavs made a late comeback in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, it wasn't enough and they lost 98-91.
Here's what some people said after the game.
"We didn't compete. We had one guy that competed the entire time he was on the floor. That's Matthew Dellavedova. It's a concern for anybody when you don't go out there and compete or you don't play hard."
That is, in fact, concerning.
Here's a big quote from Coach Brown, but it's a good one. What changed in the final quarter? What did he do differently?
"We can't afford to do what we did. If we miss shots, we can live with that, but we can't afford to not play hard nor compete. We didn't do anything tricky (in the last 18 minutes). I just kept moving the lineup around and I found five guys that are just going to play hard. That's all we did, whether it was offensively or defensively. We started attacking the rim, instead of throwing the ball all over the place. We started setting solid screens for one another offensively and rolling to the hoop, but the biggest thing was defensively. Anybody can see the difference between the last 18 minutes of the game and the rest of the game. You don't have to be a basketball player, coach or anything. We didn't do a single thing differently defensively when I put those five guys in. We just played hard."
Jack was brought in to be a leader and get this team to play at a higher level. They aren't doing that right now and he's taking some of the blame.
"We don't play hard enough. It's the effort; it's the one thing you can control. With me being one of the leaders on this team, I feel the onus on that and a certain amount of responsibility for that. There's nothing coach can do; nobody should have to ask anybody to play hard."
So why aren't they playing hard? I don't know. It's really weird. But they need to start playing hard.
(On if the team is buying into Coach Brown's philosophy): "I think we are, but you can't buy into anything if you don't put forth the necessary effort for it to be successful. At this particular point, that's our biggest problem. One through fifteen, it's something that we all have to take control over now or we'll lose it before it's too late."
"I turned 21 at midnight and I'm not letting the Cavs ruin my birthday."