2014 USA 3x3 National Championship
Colorado Springs, Colo.
May 9-11
2014 USA 3x3 National Championship
Colorado Springs, Colo.
May 9-11
Additional Quotes >> USA 120, Canada 65

Additional Quotes >> USA 120, Canada 65

July 25, 2008 � Las Vegas, Nev.

Coach KUSA head coach Mike Krzyzewski (Duke University)
General Comments on the win?
I thought for our fifth day of practice we showed a lot of energy, guys are committed to playing defense. I thought playing Canada, although we�re deeper than they are and a little but bigger, the fact that they�ve been together for a while was really good for us. Their point guard did a good job against our pressure, so that was good to go against a veteran point guard, especially one that can shoot. But I like the effort we have on the defensive end of the court and after the first 10 minutes, that�s the first game we played, we just seemed like we were in synch, we were passing the ball more, and playing much better defense the last three quarters.

How important is the point guard play?
Well instead of just calling it point guard play we just call it guard play. When these two guys (Cris Paul and Deron Williams) are in together, either one of them can bring the ball up and either one of them can pressure the ball. They seem to like to play with one another. The intelligence of your team is at the highest level when you have two guys like them on the court at the same time. I was telling them that needs to be a strength of our team when the two of them are in together � we can pickup a little bit better and try to wear some people down.

You�re going to see teams that are excellent floppers, have you had a conversation about being careful?
Well actually as point of emphasis, FIBA officials have been here the last five days, two of them had the game today, point of emphasis is kind of like what they are doing in the NBA they are going to try call flopping. We�ve gone through scenarios of a bad call, or something we don�t understand and we need to respect that moment and not let it lead to another bad moment. Whether it�s a flop or a bad call or whatever, that�s just going to be part of the game. The main thing we have to do is keep our poise when those things happen so it doesn�t lead to another mistake.

The defense in the second quarter you got 11 turnovers, why was the defense so much better in the second quarter than it was the first quarter?
Well it was the first quarter we�ve played together, I think that had something to do with it. Another thing is we�re still developing this team , we will until we get to Beijing. Our training camp goes through Macao and Shanghai and they just need to get to know each other a little bit better. You don�t do that by going against the Select Team or yourselves, you�ve got to do it game situations he more the game went along the more comfortable they became. I expect that to continue to happen. We have good quickness and we have a commitment to covering each other�s back, so we�re collectively responsible on the defensive end of the court.

How happy were you particularly with your defense against the pick and roll?
Good, we tried different things. Two years ago we didn�t X and O, we didn�t have time in building our infrastructure and all that, we weren�t as good X and O wise as we are now. We�ve taken the input from these guys of how they wanted to defend it, we studied it, we have a good plan. We have I think a very good plan against it and then you have to execute the plan. A lot of it is making sure that the pick and roll is played by five guys and not two.

How satisfied are you with the makeup of this team?
We love our team. I think one thing about our group is love each other, we respect each other, were not thinking about the past, we�re think about this right now. We�ve invested, like Chris said, we�ve invested a lot, players, coaches, Jerry all the support staff and we want to represent our country real well but we also want to it for us. This is a goal for this team is to play great basketball in China.

I saw guys passing up open shots, they�re aware that there are four other great players out there, you have to become a little bit more comfortable taking shots when they become available?
We shouldn�t take bad shots. Our guards are going to find you. Today really was the best of the five days of guys running to corners, being in spots, so when these guys do get into some situations where there�s two guys on them they actually no where there bailout passes are and Michael Redd benefited from that pretty much today.

Is there anything you saw tonight that you wonder if you can get everybody on the same page?
We�re on the same page it�s just how well you�re on the same page. And that only comes with playing together. That�s why Macao and Shanghai are so important, and really the pool play. We have a tough pool and we�re playing some tough games and I think by the time we get to the medal round, we should be, unless we get hurt, very good. LeBron didn�t play today. Okay, so with LeBron there, obviously LeBron�s going to play a lot of minutes so what that does that do to a rotation? We saw a rotation based on LeBron not being there, we have to figure out what�s a good rotation or rotations when LeBron is there because he is going to be there.

Have you looked into some of the tougher opponents?
We haven�t specifically done things where were looking at specific individuals. Rather, in our practice sessions we�ve tried to defensively work on situations. What about revolving doubles, what about the slice, what about the side pick and roll, the top pick and roll, horns two guys �. So we�ve been trying to defend situations and not individuals. I think as we get into playing our exhibition game we may try to take one player out. Our goal today was not to try and take any one player out, but just play team defense and see where we were at. That will probably change in our four exhibition games when we say look this guy can�t get touches, then we�ll evaluate it at that time so its kind like s process that we�re going to go through.

What is Jason Kidd�s role on this team and do you see some of the younger players soaking up his experience?
His main role is to be out leader on and off the court He has a maturity level that is the highest on the team, maybe in the league. He�s great about sharing his knowledge and giving instruction during a game when he�s on the court and when he�s off the court. He really tried to help Chris Paul and Deron. He�s a little bit of a member of the coaching staff because if he sees something or feels it, he says why don�t we try that and we�ll look at it and a lot of times we�ll do it. He just has a great understanding of the game.

Was there anything you saw tonight that shows D-Wade is back?
One of the main reasons I wanted Dwyane on the team even though people weren�t sure he was going to be healthy enough, was the fact that if something happened with Kobe and LeBron, if Dwyane was able to get to his status of who he is as player, you sub a real elite player, an athlete, for one of those two guys. With LeBron coming back, LeBron will be in the starting lineup and Dwyane would probably be the first one off the bench. He may be the first one off the bench, not just for a perimeter player, but for Carmelo; Then LeBron would go to the four, we�ve got to look at that in our exhibition games and then how do you put in Chris Paul, Deron Williams and Michael Redd, and make that happen. Our strength of our team is our perimeter, and then that strength goes to the four position because of the way we play.

Carmelo AnthonyCarmelo Anthony (Denver Nuggets)
What is the difference between this year and 4 years ago for this team?
We have spent a lot more time together. Another year to be together. The continuity of the makeup of this team has been important. The commitment of the guys has been important. Our confidence comes out of being motivated, being together, being committed to that Gold Medal.

We�re looking forward to going to Macao and playing 2 exhibition games, then Shanghai for 2 more and then on to Beijing and the game against China on the tenth (of August).

Did you guys think this was a good game for you?
Yes, it was kind of slow early, but we opened the game up in the second quarter and took it from there.

Kobe BryantKobe Bryant (Los Angeles Lakers)
Do you expect the games in Macao and Shanghai to be tough?
Yeah, I do. I expect every game to be tough. I think that helps you prepare even more, when you know the games are going to be tough, that you�re going to be in a battle.

Did you think you accomplished anything as a team tonight?
Yeah, we played well. We won the game. We got a hold of what we�re trying to do offensively. We were able to smother them a little bit defensively

Are you getting used to international style of play?
Yeah, we are. I�m just going to play physical defense. Obviously you have to be smart
And pick your spots a little bit so you don�t foul out

Spain is in your group at the Olympics. What will it be like going against Pau Gasol?
Like every day in practice, just with a little more hype.

You guys face China in the first game of the Olympics. Are you concerned about them playing two big guys down low?
Absolutely, That�s obviously a big concern. Once we get over there we�ll have to focus on what we want to do with them and how we want to attack them.

Dwight HowardDwight Howard (Orlando Magic)
On tonight�s game versus Canada:
I think we did a pretty good job tonight, but there�s a lot of things we still have to work on, a lot of small things that we have to get better on because those are the things that make the difference.

Re: Michael Redd�s play tonight:
Michael was hot tonight, but he�s always hot. Any time he can get his shot off, he�s money. He did an excellent job tonight f shooting the ball.

Jason KiddJason Kidd (Dallas Mavericks)
How did the game go for the team tonight?
I think it was a great test for us to see where we�re at. It was nice to get out of the high school gym (where the team trained this week) and get on to a bigger stage. I think we were maybe a little anxious in the first quarter and wanted to do too much, but then we settled down and started to play the way we�re supposed to play.

Are you looking forward to going to Macao?
Definitely. I wish there was a way we could speed it up a bit. We have a 13 hour flight and we�re looking forward to going to China.

Which was better, the team�s defensive or offensive effort?
I think both. Defensively we played well, we just have to work on not giving up so many 3-point shots., and then just taking care of the ball and getting good looks.

What about Michael Redd tonight?
He was awesome. That�s why we have him on the team �to change the game. With him shooting the ball like that, we are going to be tough to beat.

Chris PaulChris Paul (New Orleans Hornets)
What are some thing that you guys are thinking about to make sure you�re playing at the best of your abilities despite the perceived pressure from the American public because of recent failures?
Just like D-Will (Deron Williams) said I think the thing that is special about this team is that it�s been a three year commitment. So we feel like we have a lot invested in this, it�s not just about this year it�s about what we did in the past and all the things we�ve done to get to this point. We�re hungry, I think we have a team of guys who are hungry and never satisfied. Coach K told us best I think the first day we met this year, e said �it�s not about the expectation it�s about the anticipation.� I think everybody right now is so any to get on that plane and get over to China and be ready to go.

What were your thoughts on how Dwyane Wade looked after not playing for a couple of months?
D-Wade is a warrior as everybody knows. He�s been rehabbing and he�s been working out probably more than anybody, just trying to get back in shape, trying to see what he has. That�s D-Wade. We see it every day in practice and you saw it tonight, he�s back and when he�s aggressive like that we�re a dangerous team.

As far as playing with D-Will, it�s fun. It�s fun because we�re both guards that are unselfish and we know how to play off one another. Both defensively and offensively we like to put (on) pressure. We know each other pretty well.

Tayshaun PrinceTayshaun Prince (Detroit Pistons)
On tonight�s game:
We got off to a slow start defensively, but for the most part we finished off the game the way we wanted to. Guys made shots. Once we got solid on defense and guys stopped gambling, everything was pretty much in our favor. The only negative thing was we have to learn not to commit ticky-tack fouls to get our guys in foul trouble. Other than that, for the majority of the game, we did what we were supposed to do.

Michael ReddMichael Redd (Milwaukee Bucks)
You were pretty hot out there tonight�
It was fun, especially to be out on the court with all these great players. Getting a rhythm like we had last summer is important. Tonight was pretty good.

Our defense was pretty good tonight. We got a lot of steals, we were aggressive. I think our offense is still a little bit behind, but we�re getting there.

Did you accomplish what you wanted to accomplish tonight?
We did. We wanted to come out and give a good performance, especially for our home crowd, and play the right way. We did a good job of doing that, especially in the second half.

Dwyane WadeDwyane Wade (Miami Heat)
Your reaction to tonight�s game?
First of all it was good to have an opportunity to play someone else. I liked some of things we did defensively, We played together as a team, we really got after them defensively. Both groups came in in waves and that was good.

What was it like playing against your teammate Joel Anthony?
It was kind of funny. Joel is a guy who worked very hard and to see him on the Canadian national team shows a lot about his commitment to basketball. I had a couple of words for him. It was good to see him.

What does your team take out of this game?
There were some things we did well and there are some things we can work on, but the best thing is that we played together, and did it at both ends of the court. We got after them defensively and when LeBron comes back it�s going to make us even more explosive as a team.

Deron WilliamsDeron Williams (Utah Jazz)

What are some thing that you guys are thinking about to make sure you�re playing at the best of your abilities despite the perceived pressure from the American public because of recent failures?
I�m not going to say pressure, we have high expectations for ourselves. A lot of that has to do with the 2004 Olympics, its hard not to think about those Olympics and how they ended and I know that was a big thought process when putting this team together. As far as when we step on the court every night we know we have a lot to prove for us as well as our fans and our country and that�s what we look to do when we step out on the floor.

What were your thoughts on how Dwyane Wade looked after not playing for a couple of months?
To add to (what Chris Paul said), our main goal when we go in together is to bring a lot of energy to the team. I think that�s what coach wants from us and to just give a different look. We�re definitely going to get up and pressure and try and create a lot of havoc out front, it takes pressure off our big guys. Offensively, either one of us can handle, we can pitch ahead and hit each other and it makes our offense run a little smoother.

How challenging has it been to adjust to the nuances of the international game?
It�s not too tough. Most of us have played a couple years of international ball so we�ve got the gist of it. It�s only going to be a little adjustment � different rule and the physicality. As Coach K said it goes along with playing in these type of situations and as we go along through Macao and Shaghai we�ll get more comfortable with that.

Is it hard to take an open shot, especially with a point guard mentality, you might have Kobe or D-Wade or whoever, is it hard to make sure you take that open shot?
Sometimes it is as a point guard, and I�m playing a little bit at two, it�s difficult at times to have that mentality because you come off that pick and roll and the tendency is just to give up right away �cause you see D-Wade, Kobe out there. But Coach K has told me numerous time, as well as Coach McMillan, that he wants me to be the player I am with my team and bring the same mentality to this team. I just have to keep that in my head and when I�m out there playing to attack and be me.