The Mavs' head coach had a quite a bit to say:
What would it take to be a good afternoon?
Well, we'd like to play some defense similar to what we played last
game. I thought our defense was pretty good. Any time you hold one of
the better teams in the league to 34% shooting, and outrebound them
and 22% from the three-point line, you're supposed to have a shot at
winning the game. You know, our last nine possessions of that game,
we turned it over three times, we missed three layups, we missed a
free-throw or two. We just can't have that in the last two to four
minutes of the game.
It's a big part of what we need right. Damp is a guy that can clog up
the middle for us, he's trying to block shots better than he ever
has. Dirk's blocked some shots, but we know he's not a quote-unquote
shot blocker, but the more we can keep Damp in there and keep him out
of foul trouble is more beneficial for us. I think Bass and Allen
have been pretty solid for us off the bench, but there's nothing like
having that big body in there to clog up the paint, especially
defensively. And we think that contributed to a lot of our success in
the last game defensively, what Damp is doing in there. We just gotta
find a way to get the ball in the basket on offense.
On things he values from the tip through the first five minutes:
I thought our first 5 minutes were pretty. I thought our first
quarter was pretty good. You know, they were challenged a little bit.
They responded in terms of the way we started that last game. It was
close to 30 points, and that's a pretty good quarter for us. And
also, we've had most of our problems in the half-court. I think our
running game has improved slightly and I think, in the halfcourt we
haven't been able to execute as well as we have in the past.
Hopefully we can have a little bit better half-court execution, get
out and run when we have the opportunity, and also get out and run in
the fourth quarter, which I don't think we looked to do enough in our
On private study time with Jason Kidd:
Well, more than anything, we know exactly what he's comfortable
doing. And we're doing it. He has the ball in transition and he's
running the basketball, nobody's stopping him. And when he sees
something, go. I just think there are opportunities where we think he
can push it even more and we see windows of opportunity that he
sometimes passes up. And he has the freedom to take those
opportunities, but I just think he's been a little hesitant because
he's always trying to make the pass. Hopefully, when he gets the
ball, he can just continue to be aggressive. And when teams shut down
some of his passing lanes, he's just going to have to try to go to
the basket and make something happen there. ... I don't want to ever
see him hesitating. He's been in the league too long to hesitate and
I told him today, if you've got a wide open shot, take it and we'll
live with the results. Just don't ever hesitate. And our team doesn't
ever need to see him hesitating. And there's no reason to
hesitate. ... Again, when you're talking about one of the best
passers playing our game, it's not a natural tendency for him to want
to shoot. He wants to pass. He wants to make his teammates look good.
He wants to get the ball to players at the right time and the right
position. But at the same time, most of these games right now are
being played like playoff games. Coming in to these games, teams try
to take away their strengths, and his main strength is passing. He'll
have to loosen him up a bit more. In looking at it, there are
opportunities in the game for him to score more and we've changed a
lot of our offense to get him into a lot of the stuff he was doing
with Byron when they went to the finals. A lot of two-guard front
action. When he has those opportunities, no matter what play we run,
just take it. Whatever the results are, no problem. ... (on watching
film from the Finals) We just wanted to see how he moved with the
ball and without the ball. We had a chance to take a look at that.
Games where he played well, game didn't. This evaluation period,
we've had to convince some. It's not like we made this trade on draft
night and then I had the whole months of July, August and September
to do what I'm doing now. You know, we did a little bit of it before.
It takes a lot, but what we try to do here is eliminate all of the
excuses. We want to make sure we're in a good place mentally, so when
we walk out there on the floor, we're in the best position to perform.
Still happy with the rotation?
... ... ... Yeah. I'm happy with the rotation. ... Again, we've
changed the lineup seven games ago, in those seven games we beat some
teams that weren't in playoff contention, but the last two we lost,
we lost them in different ways. I think ... yeah, we try a lot of
different things. We tried starting George. We tried starting Terry.
And now Stackhouse, and we feel this is the best for right now,
chance for us moving forward.