Winning is a lot more fun than losing. I believe the ancient Greeks came to this conclusion many years ago (don't Google that) and I find it hard to argue with them. The Cleveland Cavaliers have done a lot of losing over the past few years. But every time that they actually win a game like this, it's way more fun to write about them and I'm sure it's way more fun to read about them. As the Cavs won their third straight game last night by beating the Sacramento Kings, I just knew that there would be some good quotes for me to blog about. Here they are.
The Cavs played a great game as a team. They had 30 assists on 41 made baskets. The ball was moving and everybody got in on the action. Five Cavaliers scored in double figures on Tuesday night. But let's admit it, this game was all about Anthony Bennett.
"Anthony Bennett getting 19 (points) and 10 (rebounds). I keep talking to you guys about him. You're starting to see a little bit of what we see in practice and the reason why we drafted him. He's a talented young man and he's starting to come to life for a little bit here. He's even better than what you saw tonight, but you'll see in time."
You hear that? He's even better than what we saw tonight. Get excited, Cavs fans.
Want some more wonderfulness about Bennett? Here you go.
"He can play. It's unfortunate that he was hurt. It's unfortunate that he didn't play in Summer League. Just part of being a young, young rookie and experiencing some things. He got himself right. He's just now starting to be who you guys are going to see a lot of in the future. It's not anything that all of a sudden happened overnight nor is it one or two things. He's a good basketball player. He can pass it. He can shoot it. He can shoot it short range. He can shoot it long range. He can run the floor. He can finish in traffic. He can rebound."
Bennett didn't have very many fun quotes, but it sure is great for him to have some success and get rewarded for working hard.
"It feels great. All the hard work I've put in with the coaching staff and the players is paying off."
He credits his teammates and support system for helping him stay focused and not get too down. That's also great to see.
"I just have great teammates, great coaching staff and friends from back home telling me to stay with it. (Saying) ‘Once you get back to Cleveland, just go back to the gym and work on your game.'"
Again, this game wasn't all about Bennett. But it's a lot more fun to read what everybody had to say about the first really good game for the #1 overall pick. Based on these quotes from everybody, it seems like the Cavs have actually done a pretty good job getting Bennett ready. People were killing the Cavs on Twitter and everywhere else for not sending Bennett down to the D-League (I was doing this to a certain degree too). It's too early to tell, but maybe Cleveland knew what they were doing with the kid.
Here's what Kyrie had to say about Bennett:
"I think it's great. It's great for the young fella to get some attention. It's great; he played a heck of a game tonight. It was awesome, I was a fan."
It was tremendous to see everybody on the Cavs having fun playing basketball. Up to this point, it's been clear that there have been problems in the locker room. There are surely still some problems, but they seem to be getting better. Guys look like they're communicating better on the floor, supporting each other, and having fun playing. Dare I say that the Cavs are...fun?
"He's just playing basketball. I said it a few days ago, I just feel like everybody was just putting too much pressure on themselves. When you go out there, you just have to play for one another, play the right way and just have some fun doing it. I think that's what we're doing and (Anthony) is just playing the game. We're all supporting him and we're all behind him 100 percent."
Mike Malone, head coach of Sacramento Kings
So far we've had a lot of awesome quotes about Bennett and the Cavs. But here's the best one:
"Anthony Bennett kicked our ass. I'm sure Chris Grant is smiling at home, and deservedly so. His number one guy came in and gets his career high in points and rebounds."
I'm not sure how Chris Grant was reacting to last night's game. Would he be smiling smugly? Would he be crying himself to sleep, yelling "I DID MY BEST!" into a pillow? Either way, this is super fun. An NBA coach said that Anthony Bennett kicked his team's ass.
This isn't the first time that an opposing coach has said something cool about the Cavs' players recently. I didn't post a quotes article after the Cavs' win against the Memphis, but Grizzlies head coach Dave Joerger was extremely complimentary of Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters.
- Final score: Cleveland Cavaliers win 3rd straight, beat Sacramento Kings 109-99
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- Sacramento Kings vs. Cleveland Cavaliers Preview: Will the Cavs lose by 44 again?
- Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Memphis Grizzlies Final Score: Cavs grind out overtime win, 91-83