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PACIFIC-12 CONFERENCE MEN'S TOURNAMENT


March 13, 2013


Aaron Bright

Johnny Dawkins

Dwight Powell


LAS VEGAS, NEVADA

Arizona State テや 89
Stanford テや 88


THE MODERATOR:テつ Coach Dawkins, an opening statement, please?
COACH DAWKINS:テつ Well, I mean, looking at the box score, I mean, Jahii Carson played an amazing game for his first ever Pac‑12 tournament.テつ I thought the young man was terrific.テつ He was hard to guard all night, made a lot of plays for his team, and you give a lot of credit.
Thought Felix was terrific.テつ He was a senior.テつ I thought he gave them great leadership, great energy.テつ He guarded multiple positions anywhere from the 3 to the 5, and I thought he was outstanding as well.テつ I thought their team really complemented them well.テつ They came in and played with a lot of confidence and made the plays they need to make to win the game.

Q.テつ Dwight, did you feel that things were in your favor going into the overtime after the four‑point play by Aaron?テつ Did you feel that you were confident that you were going to be able to pull this game out in overtime?
DWIGHT POWELL:テつ We're always playing to win, so we're always trying to keep our confidence high, and obviously the shot gave us some momentum going into overtime.テつ So, I mean, yeah.
THE MODERATOR:テつ If you two guys are 21 for 39, do you think that's a good game for shooters?テつ It seems like it.
DWIGHT POWELL:テつ Yeah.

Q.テつ Aaron, just talk about going against Jahii and him going against you also.テつ What kind of a match‑up that was?
AARON BRIGHT:テつ He's a really great player.テつ We had a hard time to keep him out of the paint the whole night.テつ I was trying to guard him on the offensive end as well.テつ He's a great player.

Q.テつ I was curious if either of you guys had ever played in a game where your team shot one free throw in a game before?
AARON BRIGHT:テつ Yeah, I mean, yeah, we had to get to the line more.テつ I thought in the first half we settled a lot for jump shots instead of just attacking, and that's what they did to us.テつ They just drove the ball and got to the line more, so it's a big part of winning.

Q.テつ When they went small, was it hard to match up with them on the offensive end?テつ On the other end, what were you guys trying to do against that?
DWIGHT POWELL:テつ Like Coach said, Carrick's a really good player.テつ He's smart.テつ He knows how to use his body, obviously offensively take advantage of his strength.テつ So it was a challenge on both offense and defense.
They were a good team, and they rotated well.テつ They brought in an aggressive double from the weak side, so they did a good job.

Q.テつ Aaron, you picked up your fourth foul later in the first half, and you looked around like you were expecting somebody else to follow.テつ Was that a concern?
AARON BRIGHT:テつ I was more‑‑ because I think who got the ball was Gordon, and I thought somebody was supposed to have him, and we just weren't matched up.テつ It wasn't that I fouled and somebody else didn't.テつ It was just that nobody was matched up on him.テつ It was just a miscommunication.

Q.テつ Aaron, on that four‑point play at the end of regulation. Were you fouled by Gilling on that play?
AARON BRIGHT:テつ Yeah.

Q.テつ This is your fifth loss by three points or fewer throughout the season.テつ They're all different losses, but is that something coming down the stretch, what is happening late in the game?テつ Coach Dawkins, if you want to answer that one?
COACH DAWKINS:テつ We've been in a lost close games.テつ That's a good thing.テつ We have to learn how to close those games.テつ Some of that comes down to maturity.テつ Some of that comes down to guys stepping up and making plays that are there to be made.テつ I thought Aaron was a prime example of that.
We don't look like we have a chance to win that game.テつ He steps up and made a big three that turned into four, and that's stepping up and making a big play.テつ That's what we have to do.テつ And you have to grow into that.テつ Guys have to learn to do that.テつ You're fortunate if you have Jahii Carson, but there aren't that many Jahii Carsons in this country.テつ Most guys grow and develop into that as they mature, and that's part of the process.

Q.テつ You guys won the NIT last year.テつ I'm sure that's not where you wanted to be going back to at this point.テつ Can you talk about your disappointment not being able to go to the NCAAs?
AARON BRIGHT:テつ Yeah, I mean, that's everybody's goal before the season starts to make the tourney, and whatever tournament that we get into and whatever opportunity that we have, we're going to try to fulfill it.
DWIGHT POWELL:テつ Obviously, it's every college players dream to play in the March Madness tournament, and it's extremely frustrating to not get our seniors there.テつ But we all learn from it.

Q.テつ How significant were the free throws in this game?
COACH DAWKINS:テつ Well, they were significant.テつ We shot one free throw for 45 minutes, so disappointing, and they shot 17.テつ So in a one‑point game, that becomes pretty significant.
But unfortunately, we didn't get to the line.テつ We were posting, especially because we had a size advantage.テつ We went in there quite a bit, and unfortunately we just didn't come through with the ability to go to the free‑throw line from those positions.

Q.テつ Did you at all consider doing anything differently defensively to stop Carson's penetration?テつ Also, can you talk about‑‑ Randle's played well for you recently, and tonight he just couldn't get a shot to go down?
COACH DAWKINS:テつ I'll take the first one.テつ We played multiple defenses tonight against Arizona State.テつ We went zone to try to keep them out of the paint.テつ They went 11 for 22, and had one of their best shooting nights from the field.テつ And you run into a team every now and then that will do that.テつ They play with a sense of desperation, and they really stepped up and made shots.
We tried to squeeze the court on Jahii Carson to shrink the floor so he doesn't see as much space, and he was still able to squeeze through gaps and made plays.テつ He was that good.
So, yeah, we played multiple defenses and then Chasson, of course, didn't have one of his better games.テつ He didn't pick the best night to do that, but he's a sophomore, and he's going to have some ups and downs.テつ He had been playing terrific for us down the stretch, and he just had a tough night, 2 for 12.テつ That's not who he is.テつ That's not who he's been all season, and I just feel bad for him, of course, and bad for our team.

Q.テつ Can you talk about Gabe Harris in his final game?テつ He had a real good game defensively and picked up one shot.
COACH DAWKINS:テつ We love Gabe.テつ Gabe really epitomizes what we want in our student‑athletes.テつ He's a great young man.テつ He comes to practice every day to get better and push his teammates.テつ He spent most of his career injured.テつ The first three seasons he was injured with multiple knee injuries.テつ So for him to complete a season has been great for this young man to see the floor, for him to earn time, it's been great.テつ He's given us a key contribution.テつ He's come in and helped us defensively.テつ He steadies us, and he's the only senior that we have.テつ We're going to miss him.テつ We're going to miss his leadership, his toughness, and just his overall good attitude.

Q.テつ Aaron said that he thought that the lack of free throws was due to settling for jump shots.テつ What is your assessment of only getting one free throw as you said in 45 minutes?テつ Was it that they're playing such great defense, or were you not getting the calls?テつ What was your thought?
COACH DAWKINS:テつ One, I do agree with Aaron, and we talked about that, about settling.テつ We said that in the first half, we thought we were settling for too many shots on the perimeter.テつ We need to make sure we balance the offense.テつ I thought we did a much better job of that in the second half, and give them credit.テつ They played hard and made the plays they need to make in the post.
They started double teaming in low post, and that presents problems of its own because now you're rotating and you have to find your shooters.テつ I thought Dwight, for the most part, did a good job of having poise in those situations and finding guys.テつ It's just one of those things where they did a really good job and they played good defense.

Q.テつ Carrick, being able to guard Dwight at times, what's it say about him as a defender that he held his own against a guy that had four inches and a lot of pounds on him?
COACH DAWKINS:テつ Like I say, he's an all Pac‑12 player.テつ He's very, very good defensively.テつ Made the all-defensive team, and he deserved it.テつ I think you saw why tonight.テつ He can defend multiple positions.テつ He's physical enough.テつ He's strong enough.テつ He moves his feet well in the perimeter.
So he's a guy that's hard to score on.テつ He made it very difficult for Dwight tonight, but also he had the double team coming as well.テつ So he was guarding him, but also he doubled him, and that made it even more difficult for us in the low post.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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