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Additional Quotes From USA Basketball Showcase

  • Date:
    Aug 1, 2014

USA Basketball Showcase Postgame Press Conference

USA Basketball Managing Director Jerry Colangelo:
Opening remarks
“This is a very tough blow, not so much about us, but about Paul (George). It’s a first for us in USA Basketball to have something like this take place. It’s a tough situation for our entire organization, our coaches, our players, very, very emotional. There’s no way the game could have gone on under the circumstances, and so I want to save some questions, which are really addressing what our plans were and what our plans are. We need to just take a step back before we do anything at all. Our first concern, our primary concern is Paul George. I want to reach out to the Indiana Pacers organization. Have a call into owner Herb Simon. This is a tough blow for not only USA Basketball, but for the Indiana Pacers. And so as an organization we’re just going to let a little bit of time go by here before we address anything like rosters and all of that stuff. It seems so unimportant in the big scheme of things. When you have something like this take place, it puts things in perspective.”

USA Basketball Men’s National Team Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski
Opening remarks 
“First of all, I want to thank you for your understanding and I want to thank the crowd tonight, the people of Las Vegas who were here and for understanding that what was most important. In saying that, Paul’s family is with him. Kevin Pritchard from their organization is with him and he’s hopefully at the hospital right now, which is where we want to end up being fairly quick here. Everything’s on hold. Everything’s on hold right now and it should be. It’d be so inappropriate for us to talk about anything else when there’s a serious injury like this. So I appreciate your understanding and hopefully you’ll be patient in what we do going forward because we will be patient. So thank you.”

On what was said when both teams huddled together on the court after the injury:
Mike Krzyzewski: “The main thing was just their concern for Paul (George) and we as a coaching staff just told them to relax and that we felt at that point we should not go forward and not to worry about playing again. But let’s put all of our focus and all of our energy, whatever if you believe in a higher, someone up there above, let’s focus on that in regards to Paul. Look, anything can happen anywhere. A lot of things happen, and tonight, it happened during a basketball game, and we need to take care of that. That doesn’t mean it’ll happen again and again and again. It means that it happened right now and we need to take care of right now, appropriately and move on.”

On if he was able to address any of the players in the locker room following the cancelation of the remainder of the game:
Mike Krzyzewski: “Sure. We got all the players together and Jerry (Colangelo) addressed them and then I did. (It was) A very emotional setting. There’s a brotherhood in the NBA and to me, in moments like this, a family or a brotherhood shows its heart. It shows its depth. I thought that’s what our players showed during that time.”

On pausing to make National Team cuts:
Mike Krzyzewski: “No. No decisions are going to be made tomorrow.”

Jerry Colangelo: “No decisions for a while. So I would appreciate no calls like, ‘Are you going to make a decision today?’ When we’re ready to make the decision, you’ll be notified, all of you. We just need to step away.”

On the type of injury:
Jerry Colangelo: “We don’t really know. Again, now we’re speculating. We don’t know exactly. Everyone saw what we saw. But that’s for the medical team to decide, determine and then make the announcement as to what it is and what’s going to take place. We want to know as well as you do.”

On if the players said anything in the locker room after the game:
Mike Krzyzewski: “It wasn’t about saying anything at that time. We focused on prayer and thinking about Paul George. It wasn’t a time to have a discussion.”

On if Paul George said anything lying on the court after the injury:
Mike Krzyzewski: “I’m not aware of that. His dad was right with him and then his mom came down. So I felt like the medical people were right there in control. He appeared like stoic. They allowed his father to touch him and to comfort him. I thought our trainers did a great job right away in making sure, emotionally that he was as good as possible. But Paul reacted well.”  

Jerry Colangelo: “I just want to say one thing about Dr. (Riley) Williams who’s with the Hospital for Special Surgery, who is here with us. He’s part of our medical team. He’s one of the top orthopedic people in the world. (He) was right on the scene a moment later when it took place. So our whole focus is on the best care we can get for him, and we pray for his recovery and his family.” 

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