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


April 18, 2018

Billy Donovan

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma: Game Two

Jazz - 102, Thunder - 95

BILLY DONOVAN: I was fortunate enough to go to San Antonio, and I had a chance to spend a lot of time with Pop, actually three days, and he couldn't have been any more gracious to me when I was in college and welcomed me with open arms, took me to dinner. I spent a lot of time with him. And then coming here to OKC, he's always reached out to me, and obviously I was really upset to hear about the passing of his wife, and my thoughts and prayers are with him and his family, and I just wanted to say that before this started about the game because I was really moved by it when I found the news out after the game was over with, and I really feel bad for him and his family, and my prayers and thoughts are with them.

The game, I thought the first half a couple things. I thought we turned the ball over too much in the first half. I think we had nine turnovers. The offensive rebounding really was a factor. I thought there was significant runs in the game in the second half by both teams. We kind of dug ourselves out of a nine-point hole and took a pretty substantial lead, and give them credit, they kind of came charging back.

Certainly the second half I thought the free-throw line was a factor. We had some opportunities to score. We just didn't score enough in that fourth quarter. You know, we'll have to go back and look at the tape and get prepared and ready to move on and go to Utah.

Q. Coach, at the end, those last two, three possessions, did you get the shots that you wanted?
BILLY DONOVAN: I thought we had some good shots. I did not think that -- I think the entire game we could have executed better. I thought the first half we got stagnant offensively. Some of that had to do with the turnovers. We were never in a rhythm or a flow. There was no momentum. There was no flow we had.

I thought in the third quarter, we really played exceptionally well. I thought we moved the ball, did some really good things in the second half. And then even when we got downhill and got to the rim, we just couldn't make enough plays.

But I thought for the most part, the guys in the second half generated a lot better shots than we did in the first half.

Q. Donovan Mitchell obviously really effective early in the fourth quarter, but Corey had been really good on him. Did you think about possibly trying to get Corey back on him early and maybe slowing him down a little bit?
BILLY DONOVAN: Corey had done a good job. We had kind of changed some coverages and were getting hurt on the glass. I think having Jeremy in there was a reason just to try to secure some of the rebounding because I thought in that first half, the way Favors was rebounding and the way Gobert was rebounding, it was a problem for us and the reason they had the lead at the half.

With what we were doing defensively, we were going to be in some positions where we were going to have some guards on some bigs, and we needed to do a better job rebounding than we did in the first half.

I thought Jeremy played a very, very good game. I thought he gave us some good minutes there. Obviously came back with Corey when Steven fouled out. But again, with the way we played defense and the things that we were doing, I didn't think the defense was that major of a problem. He was 10 for 25. It's not like he shot a really high percentage. He made some great shots coming down the stretch, but I thought we put him to the free-throw line too much, and then for us, we couldn't score. We scored 16 points in the fourth quarter. That was a challenge for us, as well.

Q. Steven Adams seemed kind of bothered by his wrist. Do you feel that kind of played into him picking up two quick fouls and kind of having a bad night during the game, or was it simply one of those nights?
BILLY DONOVAN: I don't think there's anything wrong with his wrist or him. I think he's fine. I thought it was very difficult for him tonight. He was in foul trouble. He picked up two fouls pretty quickly in the first quarter. We had to get him back, and then he went back in there in the second quarter, I got him off at the end of the second because I didn't want him to pick up his third. He picked up two pretty quick fouls in the third quarter, and then they kind of came back in the fourth. It just -- I don't think Steven was ever able to get into a flow or a rhythm for himself because he was battling foul trouble.

And probably, you know, Gobert probably went through the same thing in Game 1.

Q. With Russell in transition, seemed like the Jazz really made an effort to do Euro fouls. Was that anything to do with --
BILLY DONOVAN: What is that?

Q. Fouling him in transition. Did you feel like that had any influence on Russell's rhythm tonight?
BILLY DONOVAN: No, I think sometimes when you do do that, it moves you closer to the bonus. I think most NBA teams, most NBA players do that when there's a disadvantage for the defense and they don't want to give up a lay-up or an open shot, they'll do that. I don't think it broke Russell's rhythm at all.

Q. Did you feel like any of the fourth quarter offensive struggles, I know often you guys only have three or fewer shooters on the floor. Do you feel like any of the offensive struggles just came from the fact that they weren't necessarily guarding the perimeter on some of the below-average three-point shooters out there?
BILLY DONOVAN: I mean, listen, Jeremy had a wide-open three from the corner. I thought Paul got downhill one time. He had a great opportunity to finish. There was some plays. Patrick had a couple of shots around the basket early in the quarter. We didn't finish. Ray missed a three, made a three. Russell had a couple pull-ups that I thought were wide open that were really, really good looks. I thought Melo got a couple good threes. I think our main guys got pretty good looks, and I thought we moved the ball to the open man. I thought we even had times where we rolled to the basket and we had a presence at the basket. We had a hard time finishing there, as well. We just didn't score enough points.

Q. I just kind of want to clarify, is there nothing wrong with Steven's wrist specifically or just no injury at all with him in his right arm, shoulder, anything?
BILLY DONOVAN: Not that I'm aware of. Again -- the one thing I would say about our guys that I respect is that when those guys go on the floor and play, whatever ailments they're having or dealing with, they're certainly cleared to play. I think this time of year I think probably nobody feels great, but there was nothing that I'm aware of that's limiting Steven. I'm sure as much as he puts his body in play and as physical as he is as a player and the way he sacrifices his body for the team, I'm sure there's probably different things that he could be dealing with, but there was nothing that was mentioned to me that said, hey, listen, take him out, he's limited, I don't know if he can play. There was nothing like that.

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