Gregg Popovich’s response after losing to the New York Knicks
After the San Antonio Spurs failed to emerge victorious over the less-than-capable New York Knicks, head coach Gregg Popovich fumed with disappointment. Before sticking it to his own team, the coach praised the Knicks and their head coach, Derek Fisher, for their 104-100 overtime upset.
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After the game, Popovich stated:
“We didn’t respect the game, we didn’t respect our opponents. It was a pathetic performance and I hope that every player is embarrassed. Not because ‘we are supposed to win the game’ but it is about how you play the game.”
The Spurs led by as much as 13 in the third quarter. However, the Knicks dwindled that number down to tie it up at the end of regulation. In overtime, they outscored the Spurs by four to leave their home fans happy. The Knicks, who improved to 14-53, became the first team with a winning percentage under .200 — at the 60 game mark or later — to defeat a defending NBA champion.
“They were really good. I take my hat off to him, a really difficult year and watching Derek conduct himself the way he has all year long is a really impressive thing. He and the coaches deserve a lot of credit and the players were fantastic tonight. They moved the ball better than we did, they played better team basketball.
Langston Galloway led all scorers in the game with 22 points, while Alexey Shved added 21 points. Strong performances were dealt by Lou Amundson, with 12 points and 17 rebounds, and Andrea Bargnani, with 16 points and 10 rebounds.
After the game, head coach Derek Fisher praised his team’s effort:
“I do think it symbolizes that we are growing, that we are moving in a positive direction. I don’t know if we would’ve been capable of this several weeks ago, a few months ago.”
Lastly, Popovich added:
“I thought their movement and unselfishness was great. Their juice and competitiveness was better than ours. They respected the game. They got rewarded for it. So I am happy for them. It will help them get through the rest of the year.”
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