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Game Quotes From Mavs VS Clippers

Clippers defeat Mavs 126-111

HEAD COACH RICK CARLISLE

(On tonight’s game…)

“There were positives in this game. The ending was difficult. We did a lot of good things to battle and  stay in it. We got it to 99-98. We had a couple of shots to take the lead that didn’t go down. From there, they made some great plays offensively and we had tough luck at our end. It’s a disappointing loss, but I thought we fought hard. They got us down the stretch.”

(On Porzingis’ production early in the fourth quarter when Luka Dončić was out…)

“He did a lot of great things. He had a really good stretch where he was creating problems with cuts, getting fouled, getting to the free throw line. He banged in a couple of threes — activity was really good. That’s a big positive. Then he did get tired, and it was clear the right time to get him out and get him a blow. He’s worked extremely hard — that’s been well documented. He did a lot of really good things in the game.”

(On the play of Ivica Zubac…)

“Some of it was his screening created problems and [Paul] George came off screens a couple of times, we had to help and they were able to find him for a lot of easy baskets. There were some situations where we ended up switching on dead hit screen-type of situations. He did a great job of shaping up, and they found him. 10-of-10 — we can do better than that. He had a great game, but I think we can play him better than that.”

(On facing the Clippers before a potential playoff matchup…)

“Everybody here is finding value in everything. Every time you look at practice footage, game footage — you name it — it’s all meaningful. In terms of where we are with these guys as a possible, or likely, playoff opponent, we’re going to have to do some things better. They were able to only turn the ball over eight times, we only turned the ball over eight times. From that point, it was a very efficient game. But they kind of went through us and jumped over us too many times, and I know we can do better in those areas.”

(On defensive struggles…)

“They went with a lineup of a lot of like-size guys, did a lot of switching and they had a lot of good defenders out there. They make it hard. But we had some opportunities that we didn’t convert. We’ll look at the film and find ways we can do better.”

(On Luka Dončić’s play in the bubble thus far…)

“He’s had a great training camp. I think defensively, he’s playing the best he’s ever played. From a leadership standpoint, he’s our leader on the floor — he’s been terrific. We know statistically that he’s going to produce a lot. Ultimately, the number one thing with him is winning. I know he won’t be happy with this game today even though he had a lot of points. I see continued improvement in his game in all areas.”

MAVERICKS GUARD LUKA DONČIĆ

(On the team’s chances potentially facing the Clippers in the playoffs…)

“We always have chances. You know we’re a great team. We always got chances no matter what. I think some people count us out, but we’re not out. I think we have chances, so we’ll give it our best.”

(On his individual performance in the bubble…)

“We’re one-and-three and that’s not good. I don’t think we should talk about individual stuff. We should talk about team stuff. You know it’s not good when we’re one-and-three, but, you know, we’ve got to  get ready for the playoffs.”

(On his defensive performance in the bubble…)

“I just think, I mean I had time off you know. It was like I had a whole new preseason to get ready. I was rested and I feel better so I think my defense better.”

MAVERICKS FORWARD KRISTAPS PORZINGIS

(On the Mavericks chances against the Clippers if they face them in the playoffs…)

“That is obviously going to be a tough matchup. They are one of the favorites to win it all. They are a big, physical team that knows how to play, has experience, and have multiple guys that have been there already. It is definitely going to be a tough matchup, but we are looking forward to the challenge and getting experience from that.”

(On if there are some promising things that they learned tonight…)

“Definitely, I think it was a good learning experience for us as a team to play against such a high-level team. It was kind of a preview of what could happen in the playoffs, so I think it was probably good for  both teams. Now it is going to be a matter of who makes the better adjustments if we do see each other in the playoffs.”

(On how tough it was to get back in the groove after returning to the game late in the fourth quarter…)

“Yes, we kind of lost the momentum a little bit, even for me after I hit those two threes. I still feel I am only about 75 to 80 percent back into the rhythm of the game and feel for all the little details. I am still on my way there and I just keep thinking of all the things I could have done better after those two big threes.Maybe the game could have gone a different way and we could have kept that momentum going. I am still learning. I am always learning, and it was a tough loss but there are definitely things to take away from this.”

(On how important it was for him to play well in the fourth quarter when Luka Dončić was on the bench…)

“We definitely miss him out there whenever he is not in. That two-man game with me and Luka is hard to guard for any team. We have seen a lot of different things that teams have tried to do with us and I think with each game we are learning all the details to take advantage. If they are switching or showing, or whatever teams are doing. We are making sure we are making the right decisions in those situations and get open looks for our teammates or for ourselves.”

MAVERICKS FORWARD MAXI KLEBER

(On what happened after the game was tied at 101…)

“We had a chance to make some big shots and take the lead. They wouldn’t fall. We had some good looks out there. Then you have them—Kawhi [Leonard] and Paul George—making clutch shots, tough shots. That’s why we couldn’t get stops, and after that it basically stayed like that. We couldn’t make a shot down the stretch even though we fought really hard I think. It’s a good a learning process for us.”

(On Ivica Zubac…)

“He’s a great center. What he has to do he does it hard. He’s rolling to the basket. He can finish [with] both hands. He has a good eye of where to be. Nothing crazy, nothing fancy, but he’s playing very solid and he perfectly fits in the center position. He also did a great job on defending out there. He got a little bit too many boards for us. We’ve got to do a better job of boxing him out down there. But he had a really good game today.”

(On what they learned about the Clippers today…)

“We know it’s going to be physical games. You’ve got to play through hard stretches when you can’t make a shot. But you’ve got to make sure you can still get stops because it’s going to come down to playing defense. They have amazing talent offensively, so you’ve got to make sure even though you don’t make the shots, you make it tough for them and don’t give them easy ones. We had a lot of miscommunication today where they easy layups, easy three-pointers, and that can’t happen again.”

MAVERICKS FORWARD DORIAN FINNEY-SMITH

(On what they can take away from this game if they have to face the Clippers in the postseason…)

“That we’ve just got to execute down the stretch. We did a good job of cutting in the third quarter, but we’ve just got to finish the game though.”

(On what happened in the final few minutes…)

“[We were] just getting distracted with calls, and things not going our way. We’ve just got to continue to play.”

(On miscommunications in tonight’s game…)

“They just can’t any open shots down the stretch. It can’t be anything easy. Everything’s got to be contested, and we’ve got to stop the second chance points. I also gambled late in the game and gave up a three, so I’ve also got to do better myself.”

(On what happened after it was tied at 101…)

“We just got distracted. We missed a couple open shots and a couple calls didn’t go our way and we just let the game slip. They got some transition threes, and just too many open looks in the fourth quarter. We’ve got to execute better down the stretch.”

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