Notes from TNT’s NBA Playoff Coverage – Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Nba-on-tntNotes from TNT’s NBA Playoff Coverage – Tuesday, May 14, 2013

TNT’s coverage of the 2013 NBA Playoffs continues Wednesday, May 15, with an exclusive doubleheader featuring the Chicago Bulls vs. Miami Heat (Game 5) at 7 p.m. ET,

followed by the Memphis Grizzlies vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (Game 5) at 9:30p.m.


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TNT Inside team discuss Warriors vs. Spurs

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Game 1: New York Knicks (82) @ Indiana Pacers (93) – Pacers leads series 3-1

Announcers: Kevin Harlan (play-by-play) and Reggie Miller (analyst) with Rachel Nichols (reporter)

Miller on Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony: “When you’re the star player and you’re the face of a franchise…you’re going to take the blunt of whatever criticism, whether good or bad, comes [your team’s] way. When you’re on the road and you’re down, you have to be able to produce.”

Miller on Knicks center Tyson Chandler’s negative comments regarding the Knicks’ play after Game 3: “When did bickering and motivation get mixed up? I like what he said. This is a way to challenge your team. When you’re down 2-1 and you’ve lost home court advantage, what better way to light a fire under them?”

Miller on Knicks guard J.R. Smith’s offensive struggles: “[J.R. Smith is a distraction] on the floor, because he is struggling offensively. He has to find his offensive rhythm on this team. When Carmelo Anthony [is not on the floor] and J.R. Smith and Jason Kidd [are] struggling, where is the offense going to come from?”

Miller on the New York Knicks’ physical play: “The oldest team in the league [is] trying to punk this young Indiana team that doesn’t have a lot of experience. I think [the Knicks] are trying to make the game more physical to get underneath the skin of the Indiana Pacers.”

Miller on Anthony’s playing time: “Carmelo has to be on the floor. He’s their first, second and third offense.”

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Sprint Halftime Report

Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny Smith

Barkley on Knicks guard J.R. Smith’s lack of confidence: “The difference between good players and great players is supreme confidence. You should never lose your confidence. When you lose your confidence, everything becomes a struggle. J.R. Smith has lost his confidence and I don’t think he will be able to get it back [in the series].”

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Miller on what has gotten the Pacers to this point: “Team basketball. They really play well together, they move the ball together. The further along – if this team does advance and get to the Conference Finals – someone is going to have to emerge from the pack. The last five minutes of the game you have to have a go-to player.”

Miller on the defensive approach of Pacers Roy Hibbert and Ian Mahinmi: “I would love to know what Frank Vogel and his coaching staff do during practice with [Roy] Hibbert and [Ian] Mahinmi in the defensive drills of going up and blocking shots…textbook.”

Miller on the Pacers’ rebounding abilities:  “Everyone rebounds their position. You don’t have to be a great offensive team – which the Pacers aren’t.  But if you play good defense and you rebound, you are going to be in every game.”

Miller on the Pacers’ bench: “If you would have told me coming into this series that the Pacers bench would outplay the New York Knicks [bench], I probably would have looked at you like you were crazy. But that is exactly what has happened through four games.”

Miller on Pacers forward Paul George: “He’s only scratched the surface of his potential.”

Miller on what the Knicks need to do in Game 5: “The Knicks are going back home to Broadway…the Garden…so the intensity and the role players obviously play much better at home. They are going to have to find a way to solve Indiana on the offensive glass.”

TNT reporter Rachel Nichols interviewed Pacers guard George Hill following the game

Hill on the Pacers’ defense: “We are just making it tough for them. We said, ‘Play with physicality and make them do what we want them to do.’ We are just having fun out there. When we play with passion and fun we are a heck of a team.”

Hill on the Pacers’ mentality playing Game 5 in New York: “It is an elimination game for us. We have to play with the same intensity, energy and passion and treat it like we are down 3-1. If we treat it like that and yield the same defensive effort we did tonight (in Game 4), we should be alright.”

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Game Break presented by the US Marines

Johnson, Barkley, O’Neal and Smith

Barkley on the Knicks’ flaws: “The two flaws show when they start playing against good teams – they live by threes and they don’t rebound the ball. That’s why they’re going to lose the series.”

O’Neal on the Golden State Warriors: “Belief is a powerful thing. The way [Warriors head coach] Mark Jackson is coaching the guys has [them] believing [they’re] not a young team, [they’re] the best shooting back court in the world. They actually believe they can beat the San Antonio Spurs. When you believe that and you go out, execute and do everything the right way, it can and will happen.”

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Game 2: Golden State Warriors (91) @ San Antonio Spurs (109) – Spurs lead 3-2

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

Webber on Warriors head coach Mark Jackson: “He’s been inspiring his guys, preaching to his choir and making them believe. After the collapse in Game 1, there is no way a young team should be smart enough to have the confidence to come back. This is not your average team.”

Webber on the stars of the 2013 NBA Playoffs: “When I think about the stars that were made in these playoffs, I go to Indiana and think about [Paul] George, I go to Chicago and think about Nate Robinson and here I think about Warriors’ [Harrison] Barnes and [Jarrett] Jack. [They are] having breakout games [and] leading their teams in unexpected ways.”

Webber on the Spurs’ strong performance at home: “When the shots don’t fall, there is no better place to go than home. There are no more excuses. You know the baskets and the rim. You have the feel. [It’s always] great to be at home.”

Webber on Golden State: “[The Warriors have] heart, athletic ability and energy. That is why they have been in all of these games. They are attacking.”

Webber on Warriors head coach Mark Jackson: “He knows how to press their buttons and it works. If you’re with the youngest team in the league, you better press their buttons to make them believe they can win every second.”

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Sprint Halftime Report

Johnson, Barkley, O’Neal and Smith

Smith on the Warriors having such a deep roster: [Stephen] Curry and [Klay] Thompson don’t have to play well for them to win. Before, they had to play exceptional for them to be in a game like this against San Antonio. That means they are a team. Now that they have [Andrew] Bogut, [David] Lee, [Jarrett] Jack and so many guys to get it done…they don’t have to play great for them to be in contention.”

Barkley on the Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green: “Tim Duncan is not going to get you 30-20 anymore. It’s got to be the perimeter guys. Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green, those guys are going to have to step up. Those guys are going to have to play well if San Antonio is going to hang on.”

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Webber on Warriors power forward David Lee: “For this guy…courage…that’s all I can say. Everyone wants to be out here, everybody says they can be.  This guy is trying to get anything he can. You have to admire his courage right now.”

Webber on Spurs guard Manu Ginobili: “[There are] so many guys in this league that you can say, ‘Why aren’t they playing? Well, they aren’t scoring.’ If you are not of any value to your team because you are not scoring, then you are not a hooper. This guy [Ginobili] is 1 for 6 [from the floor] but is still valuable and getting his players easy buckets. He’s a hooper.”

Webber on Spurs guard Tony Parker: “It amazes me that year after year…you don’t hear about him being one of the top five point guards. It is a wonderful argument but he has to be in that argument.”

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Inside the NBA presented by Hyundai

Johnson, Barkley, O’Neal and Smith

O’Neal on the San Antonio Spurs: “The San Antonio Spurs don’t panic. They have been around since 2000 winning championships. So even though the last game was bad for them they don’t panic.”

Barkley on the fatigue of Warriors guards Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson: “I think these kids have to start getting tired at some point. This is the first time they’ve made the playoffs.  Everybody gets tired. These kids have never played this many games and the Spurs are just wearing them down.”

Smith on what the Warriors need for the remainder of the series: “Games 5, 6 and 7 are about experience. That’s when it starts to show. In Game 6, the Golden State Warriors will have to become experienced if they want to make a Game 7. The energy and effort level is not going to get them to Game 7.”

O’Neal on age not having an impact on Curry and Thompson’s game:  [Stephen] Curry is 25, [Klay] Thompson is 23…I don’t think they are getting tired. Their shots were just off tonight. Great players never have two bad games in a row. I look for them when they get home to get it back on track. I don’t see them at 25 and 23 being tired.”

Barkley on how J.R. Smith’s performance is affecting the Knicks in the playoffs: “To be a good player or a great player, you have to have a short memory. You can’t let things affect you. Mentality [he] is out of it right now. If you go back and look at his entire career, this kid has All-Star type talent but his entire career has been a rollercoaster. That tells me mentally things bother him.  I don’t know if he can get it back right now. Sometimes you have one or two bad games, but it should have been back by now. The only saving grace for J.R. is that he is going home. That’s the only thing that can save him.”


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