USA-Slovenia

Additional Quotes >> USA 101, Slovenia 71

  • Date:
    Aug 26, 2014

USA Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski (Duke University)

We're you satisfied with the team and the game?

Yes, it's a game of adjustments. We just got here (Sunday), and we played against a very good team in front of a great crowd. I thought overall our effort was good, we can do things better, but overall it was good.

Do you think the team is prepared for World Cup?

For the next game, but not for the medal round. We have to get a lot better before the medal round and Barcelona.

Who are the two other teams that will join the USA on the medal podium?

I just concentrate on coaching my team. I hope we are there.

How well did you feel your bigs worked together?

Anthony (Davis), Kenneth (Faried), Rudy (Gay) and DeMarcus (Cousins) all played well tonight I thought.

How do you compare the big guys for the USA with the big guys for Spain?

I'm not gong to compare. I haven't seen Spain play. If we play Spain, it's a long ways away, so I'm just concentrating on the U.S. and trying to get better. 

What did you think of the Gran Canaria Arena and how was the stay in Gran Canaria?

Thank you for that question. I was going to say at the end of our conference what a wonderful stay we have had. Beautiful people, beautiful scenery, weather, we could not have been treated better. Great crowd, every one of us is going away feeling great, feeling great about how we were treated, so thank you to all the people of Gran Canaria. 

 

Stephen Curry (Golden State Warriors)

What do you think of the team keeping so many bigs and the look of Davis and Faried?

We're still very versatile with what we can throw out on the floor. Having six bigs that can rotate the four and the five gives us that presence. We're very deep, so we still have the opportunities to go small and play fast. But the way those guys can defend the paint, rebound, block shots and then turn that to easy offense by the way they run the floor, it's pretty hard to score on us and defend on the other end. Definitely a good look, we still got some jelling to do.

Where is the offense right now would you say?

It's pretty good.  We still got things left like body movement and knowing where everybody is. We're still kind of learning tendencies and getting comfortable, but our pick and roll game is pretty successful right now because we have so many weapons around to space the floor. Earlier in the game, we weren't making a ton of outside shots so we got to figure out how to continue to get in the paint, swing the ball and keep it moving. With our speed, we're pretty tough to guard when we do that. We showed that in the second half, got of lot of open shots just by how fast we moved.

When you're not blowing someone out, do you feel that pressure?

No, it keeps us focused. We understand the talent that is going to be in front of us to get a gold medal. Like the first half versus Puerto Rico, the first quarter tonight, you just have to battle and stick to the program, because eventually with how deep we are, we feel like we'll be able to take control of any game, just sticking with the process.

There were a lot of Curry jerseys in the stands tonight. Is this your chance to go to the next level both playing wise and popularity-wise?

It's a great opportunity. You're playing against international fans that follow our game throughout the course of the season, and we definitely appreciate that kind of support worldwide. It's kind of surreal still to know where you are – in Gran Canaria and people have your jersey on. That's kind of a cool thing to think about. I'm going to take advantage of the three weeks that we're here to play well and get some experience on the court and continue to get better, and just enjoy the fans who love basketball and the NBA.

I asked a Slovenian player if they counted your blocks, he told me to ask you if you counted their 3-pointers.

We watched their film preparing for them. We watched a lot of their game against Brazil, it was crazy. A lot of them were joking that I was playing for the wrong team because they shot a lot of threes, and they were just shooting them all over the court. That's a big strength of theirs. We knew that coming in. We had to take that away from them, and they still found ways to knock down some tough 3-pointers and long 3-pointers. They are going to be tough to defend because of the way that they can shoot the basketball.

Do you think you'll play Slovenia again in Barcelona?

It's possible for sure. That's how the brackets might shake out. If we both take care of business, one of us has to get out of the C and D bracket. If that's how it comes, we obviously got a little of experience from tonight. They’re a tough opponent, and we got to play the way we played tonight or even better when that time comes.

 

Anthony Davis (New Orleans Pelicans)

I'm wondering how often you can remember catching an ally-oop pass from a power forward?

You know with my present team in the NBA, I've gotten lobs from Ryan Anderson and Jeff Whitney. But I haven't done it in a while because I haven’t played in the NBA in a while, since the season was over. Over here we try to do what we have to do to win, we try to run our offense fluently.

How well do you see the team coming together?

We're definitely clicking at the right time. We make sure that we talk on defense, we make sure that we always communicate no matter what it is. It could be a little thing as far as making a pass, we just want to make whatever we do, we do it together because we know its going to be tough.

What did you think of the Gran Canaria Arena and how was the stay in Gran Canaria?

It's been great here, Like coach said, he summed it all up, I think everybody treated us with respect and welcomed us here with open arms. It's a great arena, a great crowd. We're just happy to be here. 

 

Kenneth Faried (Denver Nuggets)

On Gran Canaria:

I like it here. It's a nice group of people. They're respectful, they're kind, they welcomed us with open arms.

Thoughts on the game:

I think we played tired. It was hot out there. It was kind of hard. It was hot. We're not used to a gym not having AC, so this was something different.

Did you feel the team got off to a slow start?

We really struggled from the free throw line. There is such a thing as too loose, and we were. Guys were kind of just rushing their shot a little bit, not using their technique. When we tried to use technique, we were still kind of just missing. We knew coming in that it was going to be difficult because we never played in Spain before, but we got acclimated to it.

Is the team where it needs to be entering World Cup play?

Yes. I'm ready for the World Cup. I'm excited about it, and we are all going to have fun together.

 

Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings)

Can the defense make up for the lack of continuity of offense that you have right now?

We have to. Until we get a rhythm, we have to play defense and make our defense produce points.

How worried are you about getting a flow offensively?

Nah, we're all pros. They put this team together for a reason. We can get together. We can get together soon, and we're going to have to, to win this World Cup. 

How long did it take in Turkey to come together?

It definitely wasn't the first game. It was in the preliminaries. We actually almost lost to Brazil and after that, we kind of turned it up. I think today was what we needed. First half, we went shot for shot. They made a lot of tough shots on us, got into the lane, penetrated and really, really executed. I think this was like that game against Brazil.

When you get off to a slow start, it's calm on the bench?

It's calm. Like you said, our continuity on offense isn't really there yet. As long as we go out there and play defense, we'll be fine. 

Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls)

On his injuries:

I'm past my injuries and just trying to stay focused and stay together.

On the game:

I think at first we were rusty, missed a couple of free throws, but we were able to take control of the game.  Those free throws can easily be fixed, so we're not worried about that. We know we just have to play hard and come out here and just play together.

Is the team where it needs to be entering World Cup play?

For sure. No disrespect, but when you win by 20 or 30 points almost every game, you have nothing but confidence and going out there playing with a chip on your shoulder.  We know where we are at, and we are just trying to get better every day.

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