Notes from TNT’s NBA Coverage – Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Nba-on-tntNotes from TNT’s NBA Coverage – Tuesday, March 26, 2013

TNT’s NBA coverage continues Tuesday, April 2, at 8 p.m. ET with doubleheader action featuring the New York Knicks @ Miami Heat followed by the Dallas Mavericks @ L.A. Lakers at 10:30 p.m.

***CLIP OF THE NIGHT***

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Inside the NBA team discusses the L.A. Clippers’ team focus and Blake Griffin

 

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TNT NBA Tip-off presented by AutoTrader.com

Matt Winer, Shaquille O’Neal, Dennis Scott and Penny Hardaway

O’Neal on the Miami Heat: “I really think they’re going for that record. They’re embracing it [pursuit of the record].”

Hardaway on the Heat pursuing the consecutive wins record: “At this time, he [LeBron James] wants the pressure. They’re embracing it. They want the record.”

Scott on the Heat’s winning streak: “[The Miami Heat are saying] let’s go after this record. Let’s see if we can tempt fate.”

O’Neal on the Heat’s next opponents (Bulls, Hornets and Spurs): “When they play the San Antonio Spurs…they [Spurs] know what it takes and they’re going to be pumped up at home.”

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Game 1:  New York Knicks (100) @ Boston Celtics (85)

Announcers: Matt Devlin (play-by-play), Mike Fratello (analyst) and Tina Cervasio (reporter)

Fratello on the Boston Celtics without Kevin Garnett [due to injury]: “It’s a huge loss in both ends of the floor. He is the catalyst. He ties their defense together and calls the signals out. In the offensive end of the floor, Doc Rivers said he’s the second best passer on the team.”

Fratello on the Celtics’ four-game losing streak: “When you have young players that have come from losing programs, losing franchises; they don’t really understand about how you have to fight back from adversity.”

Fratello on the New York Knicks’ Kenyon Martin: “He almost gives them [Knicks] the same type of lift that ‘Birdman’ [Chris Andersen] has given Miami.”

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Fratello on New York Knicks guard Pablo Prigioni: “He’s just good enough to hurt you.”

Fratello on the Celtics losing skid and its impact on playoff seeding: “They don’t have a whole lot of time to figure this thing out.”

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Game 2:  L.A. Clippers (102) @ Dallas Mavericks (109) – OT

Announcers: Dick Stockton (play-by-play), Chris Webber (analyst) and David Aldridge (reporter)

Webber on the Clippers’ bench: “I do believe the Clippers could have the best bench in the league.”

Webber on Clippers guard Chris Paul: “It’s a pleasure to watch him play.”

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Sprint Halftime Report

Winer, O’Neal, Scott and Hardaway

Hardaway on Clippers guard Chris Paul: “He makes everybody else on the team so much better.”

O’Neal on Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki: “He definitely made me nervous [when we played against him]…he’s a great player. He worked, he worked. Now he’s one of the greatest to ever play the game.”

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Webber on Clippers point guard Chris Paul: “Chris Paul might be a top five post player in this league.”

TNT’s David Aldridge interviewed Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki after the game

Nowitzki: “We just battled. We got a couple of lucky bounces. We’re playing our best basketball all season. We’ve got to let it all hang out.”

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Inside the NBA presented by Hyundai

Winer, O’Neal, Scott and Hardaway

Scott on the Mavericks trying to make the playoffs: “They are fighting uphill and starting to play desperation basketball. These guys just have to fight it out and realize their playoffs are starting now. They have to finish up the season as strong as possible.”

O’Neal on the Clippers: “The way they played tonight…with 10 games left and you’re getting ready for the playoffs, there’s no way you’re supposed to lose to a team like this [Mavericks]. With 10 games left, that’s when you’re really supposed to get your focus on. But if they keep playing that hero ball, they’ll go home early.”

O’Neal on Lakers center Dwight Howard: “I’ve always said it and I’m going to keep saying it…I need more from Dwight Howard. He’s rebounding and playing great defense but I need more offensively from him.”

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The TNT studio crew interviewed Knicks guard J.R. Smith via satellite following the Celtics/Knicks game

Smith on whether he thinks the Knicks can beat the Miami Heat in the playoffs: “I think so. We played them tough the first two games and let the last one slip away at home. They’re on an unbelievable win streak right now. But we just have to take it a game at a time. If we see them in the Eastern Conference Finals…then that’s when we’ll see them.”

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Hardaway on the Knicks down the stretch: “Getting healthy is the No. 1 thing for them right now. The group that’s on the floor right now has to continue to play well together. They play defense very hard and contest a lot of shots. They’re buying into the defensive scheme because the threes aren’t falling as much.”

O’Neal on Heat forward LeBron James: “LeBron is an unusual type of superstar. He is an old school type of superstar. He looks to pass first before he goes to work…He’s playing great team ball and the others have stepped up very nicely.”

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