Postgame Quotes - January 18, 2014

Pistons at Wizards

Detroit: Maurice Cheeks | Josh Smith | Rodney Stuckey
Wizards: Randy Wittman | John Wall | Bradley Beal

Pistons Head Coach Maurice Cheeks

On finishing the game and getting the win: “We made plays down the stretch. We made good defensive plays down the stretch, and we continued to score the ball, and we made our foul shots, but I thought our defense down the stretch was very good.”

On their second unit playing well: “I thought our second unit was the reason why we got back in the game and played the way we played. Our second unit came in and kind of changed the game.”

On John Wall: “John Wall, and I think as I am watching him play, he has slowed his game down. He attacks when he has space and I think he is a little smoother in everything he does. You can see the time that he has put in his game. He runs his team well. He runs the break as well as anyone. I think he just has taken his time, and picked up the little nuances of the game and coupled with his ability to get to the rim, he has learned how to shoot the ball and when you have a guy with the quickness that he has, with the ability to get to the rim and then he picks up the jump shot, I think it is pretty dangerous. He plays the game at a nice little speed now and I said to some people, ‘This guy is good now.’”

Pistons Forward Josh Smith

On his performance tonight: “It's just something I had to build within myself. Just knowing that shots weren't falling for me but, I wanted to be able to stay positive, stay aggressive and it was able to go down for me in the second half.”

On closing out the game: “We stayed with it… We stayed positive. The bench guys came in and gave us some great energy. Whenever we had an opportunity to come back in the game we did good in trying to finish it out.”

On coming off of last night’s loss: “It was a disappointing and embarrassing loss last night and we wanted to be able to come in and give as much energy as possible to beat a hot Wizards team. They've been winning as of late, they have a pretty good team over there and we just wanted to be able to come in and match that intensity."

Pistons Guard Rodney Stuckey

On tonight's game: “You know everybody came in and contributed. Will [Bynum] came in and did a good job for us, Kyle [Singler] as always, myself, just try to hold it down. Josh [Smith] came in in the second half and played the way he was supposed to play.”

On last night's loss: “Yesterday's game was just all in effort. We didn't come out with any effort, we didn't compete so tonight we did that.”

On coming off the bench: “When I go in there I just go in there and try to do what I do and try to change the game. That's what we did tonight, the bench players. We came in and did a good job of changing the game.”


Wizards Head Coach Randy Wittman

On missing shots the game: “Bradley goes 2-for-14, a lot of the shots, as the last one was, were wide open, but I don’t really believe that was the reason we lost. Rebounding was critical with this team and we allowed them to, especially in the second half, just beat us up on the boards. Offensive rebounds, we just lost everything against this team and we can’t afford to. Second chance points, we talked about they’re second or third in the league, first in offensive rebounds and points in the paint. And then they beat us in fast break points, too. You can miss shots, but if you get stops at the other end, which we showed in our last game and we didn’t particularly play as well from an offensive standpoint, but we did things at the other end. When you have a game like that, then we miss 13 free throws out there too, you combine those things and that’s probably what happened with this.”

On playing consistently: “You come in at halftime up eight and within the first five minutes we were down one, we lose that lead and get the first timeout call, that’s tough. Somehow, again we have to get a better focus of coming out. Especially when you have a lead like that. Just try to go out and get your first four or six points and all of a sudden you’re at 14, and as the opponent you’re thinking, ‘Wow,’ instead of it being the other way around where they make their first two or three shots, now it’s a two-point game. Now they’re up leading again. But we have to move on from this one. Wasn’t a situation where we didn’t have good intensity or effort, it’s a combination of things. [Rodney] Stuckey and [Josh] Smith really hurt us in the second half. I think Smith went for 20 and we had a tough matchup there the whole night.”

On Webster driving instead of shooting a three pointer: “It was either-or. We didn’t want to just force and jack up a three if it wasn’t there. We practice all the time of now putting it on the floor and trying to see if they will collapse and find another shooter. I couldn’t really tell what happened when he lost the ball or how he lost the ball, but I do think he was trying to get Brad in the other corner after he put it on the floor. That’s what you work on. You don’t want to force up a three that does not have a chance to go in. You work it and try to get a defender at the rim and kick the ball back out.”

Wizards Guard John Wall

On shots not falling tonight: “Same thing as we basically said the other day, if we are not making shots, we have to do a better job at playing defense. I think we did OK, it is just Josh Smith kind of got hot for a little bit, but we did not make free throws, and they were killing us on the offensive boards. So you give a lot of credit to them coming out, and executing their game plan and making the plays down the stretch.”

On Trevor Booker going down: “I think it is tough. Book has been playing very well for us lately. Making shots, and just playing with his energy and rebounding the ball. That kind of hurt us a little bit, but we still had a chance to win the game. Something about that third quarter at times when we do not come out with that energy and it hurts us.”

On getting over the .500 mark: “I do not know. I think we are coming out and playing the right way. Like you said, we did not make shots tonight, and we turned the ball over a little too much, and did not make free throws. They executed off of our turnovers and made the plays down the stretch. We just have to deal with it. We look forward and take a day off tomorrow and get ready for Philadelphia on Monday.”

On importance of the next two home games: “It is very big, try to get back to .500 at least, and then get over .500 before you go to a tough West Coast trip. We have to try to find to a way to win these games at home.”

Wizards Guard Bradley Beal

On tonight’s game: “It was definitely a rough night for myself and a few other guys. We missed a lot of layups and I’m probably more mad at those than I am jump shots. We still had to put ourselves in a position to win, just got to do a lot better on the offensive end.”

On playing back-to-back games: “It’s definitely tough cause these guys are good in this league. The benefit of us having a back-to-back was that they were at home. It’s definitely tough to get your legs up under you, but we can’t use that as an excuse. We still have to go out and compete at a high level and bring energy. I don’t think our energy was the same as it was the last couple games.”

On Detroit’s performance: “That’s what they are capable of doing. The whole frontcourt is huge. They all crash the boards; they had a lot of points in the paint which they are first in the league in doing. We have to try to do a better job of trying to eliminate them. Something to learn from when playing a team like that, you got to try to make them make jump shots. Josh [Smith] knocked down a few, but he won’t stay hot the whole game, so we got to be able to take those things away.”

On playing at the same level as they did against the Miami Heat: “When we were playing the Heat you’d think we’d get cold at some point. You know we didn’t miss a shot and the last game was kind of the same way. In order for us to be a great, elite, team in this league we got to be able to bring it every night on both ends of the floor. Even if the offense isn’t there, we got to get more stops on defense. If it’s a low scoring game, it’s a low scoring game, but we definitely got to do a better job of retaliating on defense.”

On looking past this game: “That’s one thing I’ve learned, my life isn’t that hard, it’s not that tough. I’m 20 years old in the NBA, what could be so difficult? I have a bad game, but I have another one in 24 hours or less. You definitely have to have amnesia and just continue to move forward.”