Cavs Top Spurs 114-109

The Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the San Antonio Spurs, 114-109 on Friday night. Darius Garland led all scorers with 32 points, 4 rebounds and 8 assists for the Cavaliers, while Evan Mobley added 15 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists in the victory. Dejounte Murray tallied 30 points, 14 rebounds and 8 assists for the Spurs in the losing effort. The Cavaliers improve to 25-18 on the season, while the Spurs fall to 15-27.

Post Game Comments:

Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich

(On the Cavs points in the paint...)

“Their size has been a problem for everybody all year. Our guys play hard as hell. I was really proud of their effort. We just can’t make that many mistakes, whether it’s letting guys duck in or you’re not shifting well. They scored 35 points in the first quarter, and they did it by getting into the paint and ducking in. We didn’t stop it. It’s what we worked on this morning, so that’s disappointing. We’ve done that a lot with a young group that hadn’t played together. We’ll go down 5 points, 10 points, 15 points, and they always get back in it. But the habits have to get there. The discipline has to get there. We’ll stick with it. They’ll continue to find ways to win as they mature in that regard.”

(On Jakob battling in the paint…)

“Jakob always battles. He’s got great character. He’ll do everything he can to help his team win.”

(On the Spurs ball distribution…)

“They’re trying their best. We got to do it better. We got to have fewer turnovers, we got to have better block outs and not give up as many offensive boards, good decisions on shots, that kind of thing. Finding the three man better. There’s lots of things we could improve, but I have to be patient to some degree, because the combinations that we have, they have basically never played together. Some of them are quite young, and that’s going to take some time. They’re taking their lumps now, but Cleveland is a hell of a team. J.B. does a good job. We were in there. We hung in there, and that’s important.”

Spurs Forward Doug McDermott.

(On being rusty his first game back...)

“I was just a little sped up. That was the first live-action I've actually had in 11 days. It's a tough way to learn. Just having a ball and just myself in a gym, it’s hard to simulate NBA speed and game. Wish I could have those back, but it's part of the game. I’ll try to improve on it.”

(On where the team is right now...)

“It's unfortunate. This virus has hit us pretty hard, and it’s just stuff you can't control. I thought we were playing some really good basketball before the road trip, and things have kind of gone a little downhill since. Once we get everyone back and get everyone's rhythm, we are going to win some games down the stretch. We still have a lot of games left. Like I said, there's a lot of young talent on this team. Obviously, got a great coaching staff, and we still really want to win. We’re competing our asses off every night. That s all we can control. Just do that every night, and the results will take care of itself.”

(On Dejounte’s play of late...)

“His game just has gone to a different level since he’s been back, and it's very impressive. He’s a special player. Not just offensively, but defensively. He brings it every night, very unselfish guy on and off the court, a great leader. We’ve had some really good team meetings and [Dejounte Murray] has been the leader of it all. So, give him a lot of credit. Obviously, didn’t go the way we wanted to tonight, but I think we are all on the same page moving forward.”

Spurs Guard Dejounte Murray

(On the biggest takeaway from the night...)

“I think the biggest thing for us is the discipline. You can go around the room for all the guys playing. Crucial turnovers. Me and some of the other guys trying to execute the game plan and knowing they’re big over there, a lot them were trying to duck in and get the easy ones. Just everything. I think we fought hard though. We fought harder. They are a good team. It’s not a fluke. It's not fake. They’re really good, so a good challenge, obviously. We fought, but I think the discipline part.”

(On getting everyone back in rhythm...)

“It’s good. Getting back to our core team. Obviously, the covid stuff, it sucks, but we’re not the only team. When you look at it in that perspective, I think it helps you out of making excuses. We are all professionals, so guys is in and guys is out. We just got to figure it out. Next man up, be ready to go. Always been told this. Always been ready for that, but it’ll be good to get everybody back.” 

(On his good play but not winning...)

“It means nothing. When you lose, it wasn’t enough. It means zero. I want no credit for losing basketball games, no matter what. I want zero credit. I appreciate my team, my coaches, fans, everything that supports me, but me as in Dejounte, I want zero credit when we can’t win basketball games. When we win basketball games, it’s cool to enjoy that for the night and then move on because it’s the NBA. It’s tough. I’m not worried about what’s going on. Like I said I don’t lack confidence. Each and every night I'm just trying to go out and compete.”

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