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Phil Jackson and Kobe Bryant: Game 1 Postgame Quotes

Postgame quotes from Phil Jackson and Kobe Bryant after LA's 100-75 Game 1 win in the NBA Finals.

Click below for the verbal magic.



Q: Can you explain how (the blowout) happened?  Was it just the veteran players were so energized?
    PHIL JACKSON:  Things just didn't go right for them tonight.  They didn't get things in rhythm and they didn't get things in the paint that they normally get, and those situations change the complexity of the game.  The first half was nip and tuck right up until the end of the second quarter.  We were able to come out and play with a different type of an attitude the second half.

Q.  Can you describe Kobe's will and what you saw from him, especially in the second and third quarters?
    PHIL JACKSON:  Well, he had the smell, and he found kind of the angle what he wanted to do out there on the floor and carried that game into the second half, just carried the game his way.  I thought we went there a little bit too often, but he said, "keep coming back.  I'm okay."  So we did.

Q.  What kind of defense did you put in your game plan tonight?

    PHIL JACKSON:  We were trying to stop penetration.  That's what you always do every single night, try and stop penetration.  They have a variety of ways of doing it, especially with as many guys as handle the ball, Alston and Jameer and obviously Turkoglu.  But we were able to stop that part of the penetration fairly well tonight.  Their inside game, which was a big part of their game, we were exceptional tonight on that.  A lot of fouls for Dwight, but nothing really in the lane.

Q.  Defensively Lakers, you must have been pleased with the effort.  It kind of reminded me a little bit of how your team lost that first game to the Rockets in that you had some time off and you went from the Utah Jazz who weren't really getting to you defensively, then you switched to a team that had a much different mindset.  Do you think that might have been in play with the Magic tonight?
    PHIL JACKSON:  You know, I don't know if I can explain it in those terms.  Things turn on a trifle in this game.  There were a couple plays that kind of changed that up.  They had a five point lead in the second period, they were kind of rolling against our bench mob out there, and we made some changes, called a time out, and it flipped, the switch flipped all of a sudden.  And these guys went from that five point deficit to a ten point lead.
    But there were a lot of little things that happened, tipped balls, missed shots.  They had some wide open threes they didn't hit.  We got some rebounds that were good, solid plays.  We had more offensive opportunities.  Those things happened for us.

Q.  You've admitted that the Magic probably could not have played worse in this basketball game.  Can the Lakers play better than what they played?
    PHIL JACKSON:  Well, you always think they can.  You always want to see that.  Here's two teams that came in The Finals that have a total of 17 turnovers for the game, which is a limited number.  So turnover wise it was a tight game.
    Our exceptional part of it tonight was Kobe's drive.  I think he didn't shoot great, 16 for 34, but his energy in the game carried it.

Q.  What did you think of Bynum and the match up against Howard?
    PHIL JACKSON:  He had some times out there that I thought he played him really well.  He did a good job defensively to try and cover the screen roll.  Offensively he had some opportunities that he converted on, which we like.  There was a couple plays that he could have probably powered through for some lay ups that didn't happen for him, but those are going to happen.

Q.  Kobe said earlier in the playoffs that there is no such thing as momentum, you have to remake it game after game.  How do you sustain what you saw in terms of energy tonight?  What can you do between now and Sunday?
    PHIL JACKSON:  Well, there's two days off between these games, so it's a big opportunity for them to reset themselves and get themselves back in form.  For us it's always    coaching staff, we always think the team that has to make the adjustments has the advantage.  We have to find a way to anticipate what they're going to come back and do against us, see what we can do to eliminate the mistakes we made tonight, and play even better defensively than we played tonight.
    I think offensively there's some things we can learn about this team.

Q.  What are you going to tell the team and what are you going to work on over the next two days to have the best chances of winning again on Sunday?
    PHIL JACKSON:  Well, most of it is the intention, their intention, what they're looking for is what I think you have to find as a team.  To know the mindset of what's going on with their basketball club.  They're a really disciplined team and you have to know where they're going with the ball when they start out, and that's what I think we're looking to do.

Q.  Can you talk about the decision to double Dwight on some of those defensive possessions, and how you felt it was effective?

    PHIL JACKSON:  Well, if we were in the territory we knew we wanted to come help on him.  We got a couple opportunities to come back and snap at the ball or keep him from having rhythm to get into the basket.  But for the most part, we had mostly good individual defense in situations that he either lost the ball or didn't make a shot on it.
    The rest of it were fouls.  16 times at the foul line is quite a bit.

Q.  You said before the game that you didn't necessarily change your defensive game plan to account for (Jameer) Nelson.  Did you see enough from him tonight, he had four assists in the first few minutes, to maybe game plan for him a little bit going forward?

    PHIL JACKSON:  Well, I think he had an effect in the ballgame.  I think he came in, he was effective in penetration and finding guys.  It looked like he was back in the format of what he wanted to get accomplished.  Obviously his shooting wasn't quite there, although he hit a couple shots, but we anticipate he'll be out there more.


Q.  Can you talk about the defensive intensity you guys played with tonight?

    KOBE BRYANT:  We played very well.  We played with a lot of energy.  Guys are working hard.  That's all you can ask for when you played against the Orlando Magic because they do a great job of spacing you out, and everybody on the floor has to be willing to work.

Q.  Was there a different way you played them tonight as opposed to the two games in the regular season?
    KOBE BRYANT:  No, I just think we did a better job, did a better job staying alert, and like I said, man 1 through 5, everybody was dedicated to working hard, came back in transition, did a pretty good job.

Q.  You had a career Finals high with 40 points.  What can you do to take this into Game 2?

    KOBE BRYANT:  I think the best thing we can do is just forget about it.  That's the best thing we can do.  This is a resilient Orlando Magic team.  They've been through a lot of adverse situations before.  This is nothing to them.  They'll be ready to go Game 2, and we've just got to forget about this and move on.

Q.  The camera is catching you with bared teeth all the time now.  They started to show it last couple games, Denver and here.  Are you aware you're doing it?  And secondarily, your expressiveness has gone up another level.  You've been a hard driving leader for a long time, but it seems like you've really cut it loose now.

    KOBE BRYANT:  I just want it so bad, that's all.  I just want it really bad.  You just put everything you have into the game and your emotions kind of flow out of you.

Q.  We've talked a lot about the offense of you guys tonight, but the defense was spectacular, too.  Can you talk about some things you guys were doing to keep them from getting a lot of open shots?

    KOBE BRYANT:  We just had to work hard.  Just worked hard.  We scrambled.  We were very active, our bigs were very active, and that's what you have to do against a team like Orlando.  You've got to work your tail off 24 seconds.

Q.  What's the rest of your life like right now?  Are you completely focused on this right now?  We talked a lot before in the Denver series about how much or how little you're sleeping.  Is this completely all you're focused on right now?
    KOBE BRYANT:  Pretty much.  Pretty much.  I'm a bit of a    my kids call me Grumpy from the Seven Dwarfs.  That's how I've been at home, just a grouch.

 Q.  You talked about you want it so badly.  Not to suggest that you didn't want it badly in 2000 and 2001 and 2002, but the fact that you've lost the last two times you've been in The Finals, the fact that there's been a gap, has that created this more intense hunger that we just have from you right now?
    KOBE BRYANT:  It's a bit of everything.  It's a lot of motivation, a lot of motivation.  I'm using it all right now.

Q.  At times the offense departed from trying to win the high pick and roll by offense.  Was that by design?  Were you seeing things?
    KOBE BRYANT:  That was by design.  We saw something that at the moment in the game we needed a little bit of scoring, so I took it upon myself to use that play, come off, put a couple points on the board, tried to gear up some momentum.

Q.  Can you talk about what you got from Fisher and Bynum versus Rafer and Dwight?
    KOBE BRYANT:  Well, we got consistent effort.  Fish is always    they didn't leave Fish too much.  As the series goes on, maybe that will change.  But the shots that he did have he knocked down.  Defensively his effort was outstanding, and the same with Andrew.  I thought Andrew came out with a lot of energy to start the ballgame, which really helped get us off to a good start and did a good job as you can on Dwight.
    I felt like he did a good job.

Q.  Orlando, when you saw the rookie Lee guarding you, it's not like you're playing in the series with Houston.  Do you feel like you can take advantage of this guy at any opportunity that you so choose?

    KOBE BRYANT:  No, I don't think so.  I think that's doing him a tremendous discredit because even though he's a rookie, he's a very, very solid defensive player.  I think he's proven that all year long.  He's proven that in the playoffs, and Pietrus as well.

Comments () | Archives (8)

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One-trick pony, that's what Orlando is. Drive & dish, drive & dish. Good trick, yeah. Next.


I don't think Fish has a "something" like a certain weapon to use all the time what that last post was to respond to how some people gave up on Derek and immediately proclaiming Farmar to be better already when Farmar hasn't even out-played Derek Fisher on the court.

This game shows that you can have a good game as much as a bad game. I mean one game don't make you "better than this guy" and those Farmar knuckleheads take his Game 3 performance as some divine sign that Farmar is better than Derek.

Tonight showed how Derek still isn't washed up....yet and how Farmar isn't even ready to handle point guard duties full time. Farmar got outplayed by both Rafer Alston and a rusty Jameer Nelson.

Those same guys probably believed that Kwamay Brown based on his Game 3 2007 PHX Suns series was a capable force in the middle...and looked at how that "true" that turned out to be.

I'm not cheering that Farmar got outplayed rather more disappointed since I was hoping he would step up and not play like he did in last year's Finals but man did he look like that Game 4 2008 Choker like Sasha (I'm so glad Phil did not put Choke-a-cic that much). And those guys say Jordan Farmar>Aaron Brooks. XD XD XD. Brooks showed enough skill in Houston for them to trade Rafer to Orlando. Farmar couldn't even take away a 34 year old's starting job at the beginning of the season and had a newcomer named Shannon Brown eat his minutes in both the Playoffs and at the end of the regular season.

I'm pulling for Shannon to replace "No Defense" Jordan Farmar and a soon to be 35 year old Derek Fisher as the starting PG next season. The results of this game shows that Kobe and most of the team (even Luke for you punks!) played well and limiting the minutes of the two chokers on the team (Sasha and Jordan) the less likely you will have your lead go down.

And LOL at those who believe that Dwight>Shaq. The Diesel in his prime would NEVER let himself shoot 1-6 despite the amount of free throws given to Howard. Kudos to Bynum and Gasol (who did a very excellent job at denying Howard the ball the best way to really contain him) but Shaq would still get his production even in a loss whoever he is facing.


Repeat, the Magic are not the Boston Celtics and this LA team is not last year’s Lakers. The blog-sync-think championship formula worked like gold: Home court advantage? Check. Kobe MVP Performance? Check. 3 Beasts dominate 1? Check. Phil & Kobe’s experience? Check. Predicted score of 100-80? LOL. I underestimated the Lakers.

The Lakers turned Dwight Howard into Ben Wallace, Rashard Lewis into Darko Milicic, and Hedo Turkoglu into Adam Morrison. BOTH Lakers centers outplayed Magic superstar center Dwight Howard. Rashard Lewis proved he is NO power forward, Hedo played like he was with the KINGS, and Stan Van Gundy coached like Ron Jeremy ACTS.

This was the greatest Finals performance in Kobe’s career, unmatched by any game in the past but probably not yet his best game in this series. No Kobe stopper means NO wins for Orlando. Kobe sliced and diced the Magic’s heralded defense with embarrassing ease. Defensively, the Doberman led the Lakers in probably their best defensive game yet.

Another great sign for the Lakers was the outstanding performance of Andrew Bynum, whose first half defense and play against Dwight Howard freed the Lakers defense to pressure and contest every 3-point shot taken by the Magic. In just 22 minutes, Drew scored 9 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, blocked 1 shot, and had zero turnovers.

And like last Friday night, Phil’s move of putting Drew into the game in the second quarter to replace Pau for defensive reasons paid off big again. With Kobe also returning to the floor, the Lakers ran a pair of sweet pick and rolls with Drew that allowed Kobe to drop two quick jumpers as the Lakers shut down the Magic and jumped from down 5 to up 5.

At halftime, Andrew Bynum had played Dwight Howard to a virtual standstill, matching him with 8 points and outrebounding him 6-4. When Drew went to the bench with 4 fouls, Pau took over and started fronting Howard on defense while torching him on offense, with the result that BOTH Lakers center actually outplayed Superman. Add in the double-double by Lamar and the Lakers basically had Kobe with a near triple-double, Lamar with a double-double, and Drew and Pau with near double-doubles. Classic Kobe and the Beasts.

The Lakers have now played 3 straight games with 48 minutes of great effort at both ends of the court. Their domination of the boards tonight 55-41, with four Lakers grabbing 8 or more rebounds, bodes well for the rest of this series. What should be obvious even to the Fakerholics is that this Lakers team is committed to defense and inside-out basketball and that, my friends, is what we all know is the key to championship basketball.

Smiles and sweet dreams for Lakers fans tonight. The FOURTH Dynasty is approaching.


So, Kobe is Grumpy (who knew?). Phil has got to be Doc. Odom is Happy, Ariza is bashful, Fish is Sneezy. Pau is definitely Sleepy, that leaves Drew as Dopey (based on age only). Any inside information on Snow White?

Lakers all the way!

"So, Kobe is Grumpy (who knew?). Phil has got to be Doc. Odom is Happy, Ariza is bashful, Fish is Sneezy. Pau is definitely Sleepy, that leaves Drew as Dopey (based on age only). Any inside information on Snow White?"

Jeanie Buss! (Oh snap! That means Snow White and Doc were having an affair?).

he should no longer be called the black mamba, he should be called the PIRANA, he is eating these guppies alive......Kobe "the Pirana" Bryant

fern b- south central LA

Lakertom is dead on, again. Dude you should be working for the Los Angeles Times instead of... you know what, don't even get me started on Plaschke and the rest of those Kobe haters.

Look, I don't know about Lakers in 4 but as a Laker fan you couldn't be any happier at this stage of the 08-09' season than right now. Last year's MVP, will be this years finals MVP, and even better - Lebron loses to the Magic, who might get completed dismantled by the Los Angeles Lakers.

If I sound like a Lebron hater, then your wrong. I'm one of the many people that enjoy the puppet commercials, but also are sick of the Kobe vs. Lebron talk. The Lakers are the best team in the world, period. If you put Lamar on any other team he'd be the 2nd best player and sometimes the first. And Pau, folks Pau is the best foward/center in the league not named Tim Duncan or Dwight Howard. Hands down. Since Duncan is now on his last leg (literally), and Dwight can't shoot a free throw to save his momma, or play with his back to the basket like any normal big man, I'll take Pau as the best big man currently. Guys we are watching history here.

Can we rejoice in seeing that Fish is back and Bynum is back. Hey, AK & BK, don't underestimate what Bynum did in game 1. This guy outplayed Dwight and set the tone for the game. Dwight became frustrated and was ineffective because the whole time he knew he had to play GREAT for them to win. Especially after coming off the 40-14 game. He was on cloud 9, now he's on cloud whine. West-siiide!

So what do we expect next game from the Magic? I expect to see Dwight to try to break the shot clock first play. I expect Lewis and Hedo to try to rip the nets first half. I expect aggressive, cross the halfcourt, trip and scratch Kobe double teams from the Magic. I expect hard fouls, technicals, and even a flagrant from the Magic. I expect Ron Jeremy aka SVG to go Terminator 3 on the refs in game 2. They are going to throw the kitchen sink at us coming out the gates. They were embarassed and they humiliated. They let their city down with that performance and they know it. They can play better and they will.

From the Lakers I expect some things too. I expect Kobe to walk out on that court with that Mike Tyson snarl. I expect the leaders of the team to begin their speech with "remember the Game 6, 40 point beat down in Boston!" I expect the Lakers to be READY for the Magic's adjustments. I expect Kobe to get more than 10 assists, because they aren't going to live with 40 points next time. I expect the rest of the bench to contribute more, mainly shannon, farmar, and Mr. where did he go Sasha.
I expect LO to prove once again why he deserves that contract from Laker management. I expect Pau, the best big man in the game to get 30 and 12. I expect Ariza, the most underrated defender in the game to continue playing out of this world. And I expect chants of MVP, MVP, MVP!

Lakers in 5, happy birthday Mamba24. Peace, love and hairgrease fam. Much love.



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