Mar 26, 2012; Washington, DC, USA; Washington Wizards head coach Randy Wittman reacts during the game against the Detroit Pistons during the first half at the Verizon Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE
WASHINGTON -- We'll get to the postgame quotes following the Washington Wizards' 79-77 loss to the Detroit Pistons in a minute, but first, Michael Katz and I decided to record another post-game video on the Bullets Forever YouTube channel. Here it is.
I apologize for the wonky audio levels. Basically, I put the microphone on the wrong side of my shirt (i.e. not the side next to Michael) and didn't realize it until after we both left the Verizon Center. This video thing sure is tougher than it looks.
Anyway, here are your quotes.
On the same story playing out again: "We got to get to a point where we get a lead and we don't play just to play. We begin dribbling around, [and] I don't know what we're running. We just go out and play. All of a sudden, boom, it's down to 10, it's down to seven, it's down to five, and you're in a game. Gotta put teams away. When you got teams down in the second half, fourth quarter, you got to put them away. You can't go off on your own."
On whether experience will help: "If you keep running into the same guy and he keeps punching you in the face, you're going to learn to get your hands up, aren't you?"
On losing the leads: "We got to understand, you got to tighten the screws even more for this team, you got to tighten the screws even more when you got a team down to get that win. We kind of played back a little bit, carefree. [But] that's when you really got to tighten it down."
On John Wall's inability to score late: "It's not one guy that's going to deliver for us. It's situational, who you're playing. It's not laid on one guy's hands. I don't want to put this on John's hands. Now, John's the point guard, and in that process of having a lead, understanding that the screws are tighter now, we've got to execute things offensively and not just play, that's his responsibility. But to make a big shot? Listen, we played off Nene in the post three straight times. John missed a great handback, and I think [Nene] scored the other two times down there. Those are things we have to realize."
On defensive lapses: "Tayshaun Prince is posted up. We're up two. Last thing you want to do is give up a three. We got sucked in, they kicked it out and Stuckey got a three to put them up one. Now, you're fighting that game instead of being tied. Tied doesn't hurt you. You have 30 seconds left and three timeouts. Tie doesn't hurt us. Three does. Now, you're playing the one-up, one-down game."
On what's causing the losses: "It's mental for sure. You think about it all the time. We're playing not to lose, and that's why we're not winning."
On Rodney Stuckey's game-winner: "That was great defense by Jordan, and [Roger Mason] was right behind him. He just made a tough shot. You can't play no better defense than that without fouling, so just got to give credit to him. It was a big shot."
On the fourth quarter: "We're making the right plays. We just need the ball to go in the basket. Then, on defense, we're making the stops, but we need to make sure we're getting the offensive rebound."
On how much responsibility he takes: "I put a lot of pressure on myself. When you lose these types of games, it's me as a point guard. It's me that needs to get us into the best sets and call the right plays."
On late-game situations: "You try to make the play, but I know that most teams are going to try to get the ball out of my hands. I got to do the right thing and try not to force it, and get the ball to other guys. That's where you have to trust your teammates."
On what caused the loss: "Tonight, we did it to ourselves. There's no reason for that game to be that close. We came out in the third quarter, we got it going, we had a double-figure lead and we should have kept it that way. We can only look at ourselves. Defensively, we were solid most of the game, but we took a little break and they came back on us. Mental lapses out there. Some of the shots they were making were due to us not following through defensively."