home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


May 16, 2018

Mike D'Antoni

Houston, Texas: Game Two

Q. The first few possessions of Game 1 it was a lot of James Harden. Would you like to see Chris Paul be a little bit more involved in the offense at that point so James doesn't have to exert so much energy?
MIKE D'ANTONI: I don't know. They kind of work it out. One way or the other, we're up 11-2 or something so how could it be bad? I don't know. I think they read the situation. They'll look at it. Obviously I think James hit a three, and Chris will go back to him. If it was just the other way, then James would have gone to Chris. So I think it works out.

Q. On a day like this, how much noise do you hear from just having a conversation, driving in, do you turn on the radio at all?

Q. Do you just go into total blackout?
MIKE D'ANTONI: No, no, I don't listen. That would be counterproductive. No, I don't. I think that's the key for players and for coaches. In this business, what decisions we make are made based on the locker room, based on the analytic data that we have and based on about four or five really good coaches in there dissecting the film with the players and figuring out how we can get better. Everything else is noise.

It's not a complete 100 percent filter because some kind of slides through. Because you have good friends that text you: Can you believe what they said? Oh, I don't want to know. I don't want to look at that (laughing).

But it's all part of the game. It's all good. Everybody has their job to do, and our job is to make the best decision we can make.

Q. When a guy like Steph Curry scores less than 20 points, is the natural assumption the next time you see him on the court is that he's going to be better?
MIKE D'ANTONI: Are you trying to give me shivers or something? Are you trying to put the fear of God in me or what?

Q. Is that what happens when a great player plays that way?
MIKE D'ANTONI: It could happen, no doubt. That's why he's great. The assumption is -- they didn't lose, but last game, this game, next game, you try to do what you can do. The stuff that Kevin Durant did, for example, he's Kevin Durant. My gosh, he can do that.

But, again, I'm a real believer that that's not why we lost the game. We just got messed up too many times defensively on not switching when we should have properly. Not getting back matched up in transition.

Turned the ball over 16 times. About six things that really determined the game. We've got to do a better job of that.

Q. With the proliferation of threes, there is also so much more creativity from threes. Like Harden's step-back; somebody like P.J. Tucker, who has become a master of the corner three; Steph off the dribble. How impressed you are with the different dynamics and style of three-point shooting?
MIKE D'ANTONI: It is impressive. But I'm impressed with, not just that, but just the talent and ability of players around the league. Not just our guys, who I could watch every day and marvel at, and Golden State, obviously. But the young guys in the league -- what Donovan Mitchell does, what the Boston guys are doing. The talent of every generation that comes up is starting to keep going up.

Right now, we're shooting step-back threes. Pretty soon there will probably be hook shots from three. Somebody will throw a baseball pass from half court. I don't know where it goes, where's the limit, how good can they get. But it's impressive and fun to watch and exciting. And I think for the fans, basketball is growing because of that, because the talent of these players coming in is off the charts.

Q. When Clint Capela is going against a small lineup, as he will to start the game, is there anything he needs to know, not necessarily differently, but more so against that lineup than he does against more conventional size?
MIKE D'ANTONI: Not really. We do the same thing. How he sets picks and stuff, we talk to him about it. He would change not -- conventional center, not conventional, one is the center to rim, center up. They switch a lot. There are different ways you want to set the pick, and I think he'll be better at it today than even last time because you've got to shift gears.

We had two series in a row where the guy was back and now they're up. It's just different. That would be the only difference. Also how you run the floor, what we're trying to do is a little bit different because they do a lot of switching and stuff and we'd like to counteract that with some stuff before we get into a set offense.

Q. Slip more?
MIKE D'ANTONI: Yeah, slip, get to the rim, all that. But they're good at it. That's why they've won some titles. We've got to be better. We've got to impose our will. They're going to try to impose theirs, and we'll see again tonight what happens.

Q. You mentioned your coaching staff, great decisions, the analytics, all the answers you gave us yesterday. How much of this just boils down to your veteran guys making great decisions with the ball, off the ball? And how comforted are you given that that may be the reality of this series?
MIKE D'ANTONI: Well, I think every series comes down to that. You have champions for a reason. They're able to make great plays in big moments on the big stage in big lights. Hit the big shot, make the big play, make the big steal. We happen to have a bunch of guys that can do that. We haven't proved that yet as we kept going up, but I have no doubt we can. Golden State has proved it.

That's why I said from the beginning, Golden State is the favorite. They've done it. They've proved they can make big plays. They made big plays last game. Kevin Durant had a monster game. So did James. But it will come down to heart and guts and having the feel of gamesmanship. You've got to have that feel.

That's what champions are made of. I think we have a bunch of guys that can do it. Looking forward to tonight. It should be a great battle.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297