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Potent Quotables - Cavs 102 -- Wizards 90


(On tonight's game): 

"We had a lot of solid performances after we got out of our little funk early on. We came out and we were flat to begin the game, especially defensively. I thought we had some decent looks that did not go in, but we weren't the defensive aggressors and we have to be. We have to force our will upon people on that end of the floor for as close to 48 minutes as possible and we're not doing that all the time...In the second half, we were the aggressors and I thought we stepped it up a notch. It was also phenomenal to only have seven turnovers for the game."

(On the second quarter): 
"I thought us getting to the line was a huge turn of the table in the second quarter. I think we had only (three) free throws in the first quarter, but increased that dramatically in the second. Our aggression defensively also turned up our aggression on the offensive end of the floor."

(On Shaq's performance): 
"When we kind of stalled out, we said, ‘let's throw it into Shaq and have him get something for us'. It's nice to be able to throw the ball into him, space the floor, and if they go double or lose vision, we slash. He's such a willing passer and guys stepped up and made plays by either scoring or getting that ball inside out."

(On bench performances): 
"It was several different guys; Jamario kept himself ready and did a good job for us. I thought Gibson did a solid job, not only shooting the basketball, but defensively in making his guy work."

(On what ignited the defense): 
"We just played with a sense of urgency. Early on we couldn't make any shots, but our defense kept us in the game. When we start knocking down shots, it just brings a lot of energy to our defense and we just lock down on that end."

(On really noticing the Shaq effect on the offensive end): 
"We just sit there and if they double, we put ourselves in position to make sure he has an outlet and give him the ball right back. He made some great post moves and he finally made his free throws so that is a plus not only for me but for everybody else."

(On adjustments at the half to hold them to 36 points in the second half): 
"We made some adjustments. We started to be a little more aggressive on Gilbert's (Arenas) pick and rolls. He is a really good player and everybody else just buckled down and helped each other. To hold a team with that many scorers to just 36 points in the second half was a really good game for us."

(On looking forward to Thursday's matchup against Chicago): 
"They're a very talented team, young team but very talented. We are looking forward to the challenge; it is still early, but we are looking forward to the challenge. With it being a TNT game, it is going to make it fun but at the same time, we are going to try to get better. We approach every game like it's our last but continue to get better and do the things we do in practice and try to implement them into a game situation so it is going to be a good one."

(On the Cavs' offensive surge in the second half): 
"The ball was moving, guys were passing and guys were hitting their shots. We were feeling pretty good out there, but I think that our defense helped with that a little bit."

(On their defense turning the game around): 
"We are getting better. We didn't really step up to the challenge (in the first quarter). Caron (Butler) got going and Gilbert (Arenas) got going, but we clamped down there in the end of the second quarter and going into the third and fourth and we were able to pretty much take over the game."

(On him and Zydrunas playing at the same time):
"Z is a fabulous player. He is going to be on the wing a lot so if teams do double, I'm going to be looking for him. I think, at times, it will be a difficult matchup for teams that don't really have two seven-footers out there like we do."

(On getting assists and his teammates involved): 
"I have been known as one of the best passing centers in the history of the game. I like to get my teammates involved and I was doing that in the first three games. A couples times I could have taken the shot, but I am looking to get my guys involved. I have got to make sure they are comfortable first because I am going to get mine."