Quotes: Magic – 101 Cavaliers – 95

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After Sunday’s big game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Orlando Magic, there were a lot of memorable quotes from both sides of the room. Here are a few of the more memorable ones that I heard after the game.

Stan Van Gundy

On the 1/2 pick-and-roll between Vince Carter and Jameer Nelson that was so effective down the stretch…

"“We put it in yesterday, that’s the first time we’ve done it. You know, pretty simple play, hardly genius stuff. There’s like third grade teams that could come up with that stuff, but that’s about where my intelligence goes in terms of coaching, but no, we did put it in.”"

On Dwight Howard’s performance…

"“He (Howard) made great plays out of the double-teams. He hit Brandon on the cut, he hit J.J. for three. Dwight was absolutely terrific again tonight. They defended him pretty well, particularly Shaq. I thought he made good moves. It was a very physical game, he didn’t finish at as high of a percentage as he has been. But again 16 rebounds and four blocks, 20-something points, to the line 13 times, passing out of double-teams. He was fabulous again. He’s playing as well as anybody in the league and I don’t think he smiled tonight either, so that should make everybody happy.”"

On the Magic having a reputation as a “soft” team…

"“Yeah, it was a very physical game – very very physical game. Some games are like that and you fight through it and you know I’ve said it before, people can have whatever views they want of our team and they’ve had a view for over two-and-a-half year that we’re a soft team, and so my response is always go back and look at our record against the teams that are supposed to be too tough for us. Look at our record against Boston, look at our record against Cleveland and go from there. What matters in this league is results. You can have whatever opinion you want and that’s fine, but it’s about winning and losing in this league. They’ve beaten us twice and today we win. Ok, so they’re still up on us this season.”"

On  the team getting Monday off since they won’t play again until Wednesday night in Houston…

"“Just a great basketball game, very happy to win it and just as happy that I will not be back in my office for 39 hours, not that I’m counting. 39 hours, seven o’clock Tuesday morning. I’m as happy about that as I am about the win.”"

On the new-look Cavaliers…

"“That’s the first time we’ve seen it. We’ll have to a better job (on Antawn Jamison). I’ll be honest – we prepared for Jamison’s pick-and-rolls and we’ve certainly played him in the post in Washington but we did not prepare for his post-ups. We’ll be more ready on that stuff the next time that we play him. He’s a great player, they have another All-Star.”"

On beating the Cavaliers last season…

"“I think some people considered it a fluke. It’s not a fluke when you win a playoff series.”"

On the playoffs…

"“I think it’s important that we get a chance to play him…playoff game plans, who knows? We tried different things today, they tried different things today. They don’t like to double-team Dwight but he made the game so difficult that they did double-team him today. Who knows if we even play them? It’s a long way away and a lot of things have to happen between now and them. Any good games against really tough teams are what you need to get ready for the playoffs. You’re going to have to come back in games, you’re going to have to bounce back after a loss so you know and we’re coming off a very difficult loss the other night. You’re going to have to do all those things, so it’s good preparation.”"

J.J. Redick

On being fouled by Shaquille O’Neal on a late-game drive

"“I went in to dunk it. Nah, I just wanted him to make a decision. Typically when he matches up with Dwight, he favors Dwight so I just wanted to get into the paint and make him make a decision. And his decision was to hammer me.”"

On if was the hardest he’s ever been fouled…

"“Yeah, there was a moment there where I really thought my life was hanging in the balance but when I landed I thought, “oh that wasn’t so bad.” Next time, I’m going to shoot the ball.”"

On if the team could take anything from this game for the postseason…

"“Absolutely. Jamison in the third quarter, you got to see what he brings to the table. We don’t play them again for another two months and it’s right before the playoffs. I’m interested to see how they’re playing then. Check back in then I guess.”"

Matt Barnes

On the win…

"“It’s definitely just one but I think it’s a big win because they took the first two from us. No matter what people may think, it’s definitely not decided yet.”"

On defending LeBron James…

"“Make him work. You got to make him work. He’s gonna score, he’s gonna make great plays, he’s gonna get calls. You just got to fight hard, stay in to him, stay physical and stay aggressive.”"

Vince Carter

On his dish to Rashard Lewis for the game-clinching three-pointer

"“I’ve been around long enough that if you have the ball in your hands in the fourth quarter, yeah you want to score, but if you can penetrate and make plays, that’s what makes this thing.”"

Rashard Lewis

On if the win gives them confidence in tough games…

"“It most definitely gives you confidence. You know, it felt like it was a playoff atmosphere. Just kind of a taste of what we’re going to be facing in the playoffs.”"

Dwight Howard

On the physical matchup with O’Neal…

"“I weigh 270 and you know how much Shaq weighs. He’s a big load. With him, you want to just try to beat him early and push him out of there and fight him.”"

On team goals…

"“We all want to win a championship and it’s going to take me, Jameer, Vince and Rashard, the leaders of the team, to be aggressive.”"

On foul trouble…

"“You don’t want to fight with anybody out there. For me, I don’t want to waste any fouls. My teammates need me to be aggressive but also stay on the floor. That’s the best way to play Cleveland to not get in foul and not send them to the free throw line. If they score here or there, sometimes you got to live with it.”"

On what it would be like to matchup with the Cavaliers in a seven-game series…

"“It’d be fun. We did it last year. We all saw how fun it was, playing against those guys. We’re looking forward to the challenge but we can’t look past any team. When you play in the NBA, anybody can be beaten.”"

On O’Neals’ mind games…

"“I’m not getting into mind games or whatever. My job is to help my team win basketball games.”"

Shaquille O’Neal

On the physical play…

"“I really consider him a big man: myself, him and Yao. I’m sure he doesn’t mind the physicality. I sure don’t mind it. So, two big, strong guys — old bull, young bull — going at it? A fun game to watch.”"

On mentoring Howard…

"“Microsoft doesn’t give advice to Apple. So when I retire from Microsoft then maybe I’ll consult with Apple. But right now? No.”"

(Andrew Melnick is Howard the Dunk’s lead blogger and a contributor at NFL Mocks Subscribe to his RSS feed, add him on Twitter to follow him daily and you can get the HTD app here).