Brad Stevens

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Last quote by Brad Stevens

I thought we played a little too haphazard tonight. Our offensive mistakes led to bad defense, and it just kind of snowballed on us. I told our guys: 'We made a lot of great strides, but this pain is part of the path to what we ultimately want to be.feedback
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May 25 2017
This page is completely dedicated to what Brad Stevens has to say. All of Brad Stevens’s quotes are organized here by date and topic. The most recent quote attributed to Brad Stevens came from an article called Without Isaiah Thomas, Celtics crumble as Cavaliers' stars step up: “Kyrie Irving and LeBron James would be the two answers.”.
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Brad Stevens quotes

He's had a remarkable, remarkable year through some really difficult circumstances. We all draw inspiration from his presence, knowing what he's going through. ... The whole story is pretty remarkable.feedback

There were times where you could see he was really struggling, but probably nothing like the other night. I thought the first half he was really hurting, really didn't have any bounce, didn't have any push. And it's one of those things where being around him for the last couple of years, he wants to play through any and all circumstances. I think the best part about it from all of our standpoints was how inspiring it's been to have a guy that's done all this and accomplished all this and is willing to literally go out and leave it all out there.feedback

He's such an unselfish player. He made so many great plays, some that people will talk about that led to extra passes, some that led to assists. He's the best player in the world. I'm not going to criticize him one bit. I don't know what to say other than he's a handful.feedback

That's not who we have in our locker room. We've got guys that have chips on their shoulders. A lot of these guys have been overlooked and this is their first opportunity to really play a meaningful role. And as they've continued to play and play better and better and better, they've just risen in their games and with our team.feedback

We knew that Friday was a 46-point disaster, [it's] worth one. It wasn't worth all four. It was worth one. So we got back together and [Saturday] was a little bit tough; [Sunday] we had our spirit back.feedback

I don't want to put that on any one guy. Ultimately, they were terrific. We were poor. You've got to be able to pick up the slack, certainly, when other guys aren't available.feedback

He was pretty despondent not to be able to play. That guy's a tough guy, and he plays through a lot. For him to have to sit was pretty hard. Not 44 points worth. I don't want to put that on any one guy. Ultimately, they were terrific. We were poor. You've got to be able to pick up the slack, certainly, when other guys aren't available.feedback

You know what, you go and you compete on Sunday. I mean, what else do you do? And that's what I said when I went in the locker room after the game: Each game is worth one. We played probably better than the score indicated in [Game 1], but we obviously played one of our worst games you could play [in Game 2]. Coupled with how good they are and how well they've played, that's going to be a bad deal.feedback

We have to play a lot better. So we're going to focus on us, we're going to figure out ways to play better, and we're going to go after it on Sunday. We're getting on that plane to play well.feedback

Once we started helping and over-helping a little bit, Love goes nuts in the third quarter. This is the predicament they put you in.feedback

I didn't think he could get any better after that, but he is. He's a good player. Great player.feedback

[James] made it clear -- it was very clear -- that he was trying to get to the rim on us no matter who was on him. Doubling is really scary against these guys, but it may be necessary. The conundrum is do you double and risk giving up those easy step-in 3s and the rebounds? Or do you try to stay at home and do the best you can and make them make a tough shot? It's all easier said than done, but we've got to figure out our best avenue quickly.feedback

You can't dig yourself in a big hole like that against them.feedback

That's where LeBron is so good. I think that you can't throw him one look, because he will eventually pick that look apart.feedback

I think they're better than any of the four times we played them, including the last one when they smashed us. So we're going to have to play really well. ... But we have a special opportunity to get a chance to compete against them.feedback

I think the person who certainly says it all the time around here that we talk about is [Patriots coach Bill] Belichick, with the idea of doing your job and staying in the moment and focusing on the task at hand. Because that's really all you can do. If you get too caught up in doing things well or bad, it'll flip.feedback

[Thomas] was terrific [in Game 7]. And the 12-to-2 assist-to-turnover is as powerful as the 29 points. I thought he made a lot of great plays, a lot of these shots that others made in the fourth quarter were off of his passes, or started with them putting two guys on Isaiah and, man, is he a tough guy.feedback

He's dealing with more stuff, physically, and has obviously gone through what he went through at the start of the playoffs. It's pretty remarkable.feedback

We played them four times. I think they're better than any of the four times we played them, including the last one when they smashed us. So we're going to have to play really well. As we go into [Tuesday's practice], the most important thing the coaches can do -- the assistant coaches that have already worked on the scouting stuff ahead of time and myself -- is to make it as simple as possible in a short turnaround, which is easier said than done against these guys. But what a special opportunity to get a chance to compete against them.feedback

Our understanding, from what we've learned, is that they can't check that. Maybe I'm wrong there. That's what I was told [Saturday]. Our bench was asking. I was more focused on what's next because I didn't think it was going to get overturned, necessarily. But maybe, as we look at in the future, maybe that is something that we can review.feedback

Those things happen. Move on. Get ready for [Monday] night.feedback

All indications are that he felt good after yesterday's game.feedback

I think a lot of times it's turnovers and transition, and they've done a good job of really using their length and athleticism to impact us, especially in the past two games in those runs.feedback

There's only one goal in Boston. There's 17 banners hanging above us. We only go for one goal here.feedback

They obviously were locked into him the whole game, but obviously more so after the barrage of 3s. They were really up into him.feedback

If you turn the ball over against these guys, you'd prefer to drop kick it into the stands so that at least you can set your defense. Their attack in transition killed us.feedback

I think there's a certain physicality that you have to play with that all good teams play with and, at the same time, there's a line that can't be crossed. And that's not one guy, that's every guy on both teams. But, no, I'm not worried about that from [Olynyk's] standpoint.feedback

We have to focus on playing good basketball. Part of playing good basketball is being appropriately physical and being able to own your space and hold your ground and those types of things.feedback

After going through all that he's been going through with the tooth and everything I just don't think a lot of guys would have even played this game.feedback

I'm not in the middle of a lane on every play, but what I've seen is two teams playing really hard. I haven't seen anything else. Like, both teams are really competing. Either game could have gone either way. I know how much respect our plays have for their players.feedback

I know, as you get further along in the playoffs, there's the desire for a side story. And the longer you play you probably have some. It's just the way it goes when you play somebody over and over and over again. But what I've seen is two teams playing really hard and trying to focus on playing really hard to win.feedback

What else is there to say? There's a point today when he was not feeling good at all and was having a tough day. And I thought he was going to really have to gut this one out. And he not only guts it out, he ends up with 50. Pretty impressive.feedback

What else is there to say? There was a point today where he was not feeling good at all. He's had a tough day and I thought he was going to really have to gut this one out. Not only guts it out, he ends up with 50. Pretty impressive.feedback

The tooth that was knocked out was not the only one that was affected. So he had some other issues there. So he was in getting oral surgery [Monday]. A few hours after practice ended, he came by the office for a minute, but was still - I don't know if he went back to the dentist's today or went to the hospital today just to work on it some more, but he's continued to have some work on it. That will be strongly encouraged. And sometimes when guys are strongly encouraged to wear those, they wear them. And sometimes they throw them. So we'll see.feedback

He's good to go [in Game 2] but he's still in a pretty good deal of pain. He's got a swollen mouth. But they say that he's doing really well from a recovery standpoint, which is positive.feedback

I've obviously admired (Bird) since he played for the Celtics and I thought that he did a tremendous job as a coach and front office person in Indiana. When I was there, the runs they went on for all the years he was there was really impressive. So whatever he chooses to do and look forward to, we certainly all wish him the best.feedback

I think that obviously [losing a tooth] hurts and that's not fun, but in comparison to what he's gone through - even he was laughing and pseudo-smiling about it there for a while. But I think that what he's been able to do is, I think I've used the word 'unfathomable,' and I'd stick with that. I can't imagine being able to do it myself, if I were in the same situation. He's incredible.feedback

I didn't know if we'd ever score and I didn't know if they've ever stop scoring.feedback

If we don't play well, we won't win. Whatever distracts from playing well is not worth it.feedback

We all send our best. It's hard to think about how he feels right now. ... His plan is to come back today. But, like I said last night, if it becomes too much and he needs to stay, whatever he needs.feedback

I don't know if I anticipate any lineup changes.feedback

Bigger things than basketball happen and that takes precedent. I was really proud of our guys, how they treated each other and how they stuck together. Nobody pointed fingers and we're a great support network for one another, especially Isaiah. I think they appreciated being counted out.feedback

I thought he did a tremendous job as a coach and a front office person in Indiana when I was (at Butler). The runs they went on for all the years he was there was really impressive. So whatever he chooses to do I look forward to and certainly all wish him the best.feedback

First of all, I think Avery has continued to get better. Then I think he's able to use his, not only foot speed, but his conditioning, his athleticism, his ability to get up under guys and just make it as tough as possible. Great offensive players in this league are hard to stop and you try to make it as hard as you can and that's what Avery tries to do.feedback

I think he can figure out which ones he's guarding, he just looks at the stat sheet and goes from there. He's got to expect that he's going to have to guard not only the wings but also some shooting 4s and some point guards and we'll go wherever we need to with him because he's such a good defender.feedback

And he does it very consistently. That's the other thing. You have to have a DNA, a makeup about you that wants to do that every night and he's got that. Hey, every night is a huge, huge challenge for Avery because he's guarding the best players in the league and certainly when you're talking about Butler and Wade, that's as good as it gets when you're talking about wing scorers.feedback

[Saturday's funeral] is a lot more important than [Game 1 on] Sunday. If it's difficult it's difficult, but it's just a basketball game. He'll be ready to play. And if he decides when he gets there that it's too much, that's OK. That's fine. This is a lot more important.feedback

Jimmy Butler's a hard guy to guard. Dwyane Wade's a hard guy to guard. You're not going to stop those guys, but you just try to make it as hard as possible. Avery ... has done a really good job.feedback

He guarded Curry. I mean, it's hard to chase that guy around for the whole game.feedback

I can't believe it. I tried to say that earlier this week. But what he's been through and the day-to-day, it's been unfathomable the way that he's performed on the court. It's been really incredible. And it didn't go our way in Boston but the guys were resilient enough to come back and tie this up. But we have a long way to go. But what he has done has been remarkable.feedback

He's still hurting. We have to maintain the perspective that there's going to be some real ups and downs, and that's just part of it. We're here to support him, and we're going to do our jobs and play and coach basketball. But we understand that there is a bigger picture and we are here as his support network that's in Boston.feedback

It's hard to maintain a lead in this league. But also, to come into the locker room when they cut it to three and you know you've got to then step up and do it again – I thought that our guys really stayed the course.feedback

Shooting and length and athleticism. I think the biggest thing that I want to be able to do -- and I think our guys want to be able to do -- is we want to be able to spread them on offense and shoot the ball. And then we want on defense, I think if we're going to not play two bigs, we've got to be long and athletic on the perimeter, and we've got to go help each other rebound.feedback

So just because a guy starts doesn't mean he's going to play 40 minutes. But at the same time, I think when you have a chance to put a guy in that hasn't been playing as much, a good time to do it is with that first group.feedback

We have to get ready to play great on Friday. That's what our focus has to be. We don't have any other choice. And that's what we said in the locker room, and that's it.feedback

His plan, as of right now, and, again, subject to him changing if he wants, is that he'll be here [Tuesday] night and then will go to Tacoma after. So either after the game [Tuesday] night or Wednesday morning.feedback

I think the biggest thing is they really care about each other. It's really tough when he's sitting there and some of his family is back in Seattle. ... But I think the next extension of your family is who you're around every day, and your team. ... They care about one another and they support one another. That's what you hope you have in a team, but it's probably not always the case.feedback

One of the things I've learned, having been through situations in the past, is that there's really no right or wrong answer. It's whatever is right for him. He's really hurting.feedback

Whatever he needs to do he needs to do. I'm not going to ask him or make him make those decisions (tonight). Those have got to come in his own time and then we will adjust accordingly. He's an amazing player, amazing player. He somehow plays like that ... You couldn't help but be inspired by his play.feedback

He was incredible. He's an amazing player, amazing person. And days won't get any easier for him, but he somehow plays like that. Those've got to come on his own time, and then we'll adjust accordingly. This is hard. This was difficult, and I felt like our guys really dealt with it best. We knew (Thomas) was hurting...we have a lot of respect for him that he was able to come out.feedback

I think everybody reached out. It's a close-knit team. He's a big part of it. Isaiah's a great teammate. Isaiah's a great husband. He's a great father. He's a great guy, great son, and brother. And I think, ultimately, we just all tried to do our part in letting him know we were thinking about him and anything we could all do to help we'd do, that family and this particular situation with his family takes precedent over everything else going on. And that we're here for him if he needs us. Part of being supportive for him is putting our best foot forward.feedback

And letting him know it's OK, whatever his emotions are at that time, it's OK to let them out. Again, and you all know this from having really tough stuff happen: I don't that there's a script for this. I don't know that there is a script for the emotions that somebody is supposed to show. I think that, ultimately, however you feel, that's the way you feel. And I think that we're here, again, as a support. And part of our support is to be great teammates and great teammates are ready to compete together and compete for each other.feedback

I think his intention is to play. We've talked a little bit last night and then again today about as he goes through it and if he feels like he needs to not [play], then whatever he wants. I think that one of the things that I've learned having been through situations in the past is that there's really no right or wrong answer. It's whatever's right for him. That's what we've encouraged him. And he's really hurting. It's a tough situation.feedback

I don't think he's as concerned about people blasting him as he is about winning. It gives you a chance to win if you make one of those. He doesn't put much into stats, other than whether you win or lose. And I think that's one of the things that you really appreciate about him.feedback

Whatever he needs to do, he needs to do, and we'll help in any way.feedback

We're going to have to play that way once the games start [Sunday] because every team is tough and you gotta play well to win.feedback

I think that's been one of the reasons why we've been at the level we've been at. Not only this year, but being able to come together in the last 15 months before that and play with a chip on their shoulder. If there's anything that would have been used to describe this group of guys, both early on and throughout, it's they have a chip on their shoulder.feedback

And then I just said, basically, Let me know if it gets close. But that wasn't the deciding factor in any moves.feedback

I'm excited about progress, from the standpoint that we've been consistent in our approach. We haven't got too high or low with regard to long losing streaks or, if things don't go our way, not being able to respond. Most good teams are that way.feedback

In Boston, you only talk about one goal, right?feedback

They're so versatile with how many different ways they can play, and that's mostly due to the fact they've got a guy at 6-8, 260 who can play all five positions.feedback

I don't really get into when you're playing people. I've seen it go any number of ways. I've seen teams be really fresh and get pounded, teams be really fresh and win, teams on the second night of a back-to-back look like the best game they've played all season. So I don't really put a lot of stock into that. It's part of it. And through 82 games you see it all. So it's not part of our discussion. Our discussion is playing well.feedback

No frustration from my part. I do what I was hired to do, and that's coach the 15 guys in the locker room, and listen, I very much understand where we are in our present state. But I also understand where we could be, and we have a chance, things have to go well, to have a good, competitive team for a long time. One of the things I really appreciate about our front office and our ownership is they are really measured. We were really active in seeking the right deal, but we weren't going to make the wrong one. So I completely, I don't have anything but great things to say about all of them.feedback

All signs point to him practicing Tuesday with us.feedback

I think that, a couple of years ago, I would have thought that [getting to 50 wins] was going to be something that we were really going to have to build for a while to [achieve]. Obviously, we've been lucky to strike on a couple of guys. Everybody's got a like mind with regard to the bigger purpose of playing for the Celtics and trying to compete every night. So we're happy, but we've got to finish out these next five games well and then get ready for the playoffs. We'll look at whatever we accomplish at the end of the season at the end of the season.feedback

I can tell you it's not coaching. You're not going to have a roster of 15 guys that don't play hard and think you're going to be able to convince them to play hard for 82 games. I think you recruit hard-playing guys, and if you're a hard-playing guy and you're around other hard-playing guys, that's contagious.feedback

He's not a rookie. And I say that with complete respect to him. Like that guy, he knows how to play. He's known how to play for a long time. He was a tremendous college player who was an ultimate winner and he's just picked right up where he left off.feedback

He has been a winner from Day 1. I'm not surprised by Malcolm Brogdon at all. ... He's an impressive young man.feedback

We don't play with enough sustained level of play and that' pretty consistent for us. I'm surprised at where we are record-wise, because we've got to play at a higher level for 48 minutes. We just don't do it.feedback

I don't really speak to the rumor mill or anything else, but I made it pretty clear that I am going to be here. I've been asked about that quite a bit. I'll just keep saying the same thing – I'll be here until the Celtics decide to move in another direction.feedback

I think it's all flattering, but it's certainly flattering to ever be considered, because there aren't that many jobs out there. But at the same time, I'm really flattered to be here and thankful to be here.feedback

I'm not sure I would have thought that [Brown] would be where he is right now, just because I thought that he had a lot of things that he really would have to improve on to be able to add value to winning at this level. And he's proven that he can pick things up on the fly and that he can play at a high level. I know there's going to be ups and downs with anybody -- and certainly with a 20-year-old -- but he's got a chance to be pretty darn good.feedback

First time since (the injury). Feel like sooner rather than later he'll be back, but I don't want to put a specific timetable on him.feedback

Obviously he made some tremendous shots, that's what he does. And then we weren't scoring on the other end. So obviously they kind of flipped the script there at the end of the third. You know from watching the NBA, 13 is nothing when you've got a team like that.feedback

I don't think our shot selection has been great for a couple of games now, but I also think they really defended us well and took some things away.feedback

I think he's got two things: One, he's not afraid to put his body on the line. No. 2 is he's got great instincts to beat people to a spot. I think he does a good job of knowing people's tendencies, knowing what they want to do, the directions they want to go. But then he plays with multiple efforts to get there. And then, you know, it's easier said than done to be willing to step in front of some of these guys driving the ball. He does that over and over.feedback

I don't think I'm saying anything earth-shattering here: We're all chasing Cleveland.feedback

There were a few too many transition baskets allowed. But I think that was strictly coaching.feedback

Everything fuels him. I think that's the thing we've all learned about Isaiah. Everybody knew he had a chip on his shoulder. Now you realize he's hungry for more. Success fuels him, too, just the same. He's an incredible guy because he just wants to get better, because he just wants to keep getting better whether he's getting accolades or getting criticism.feedback

There are so many guards right now that can make exceptional plays off the dribble. Maybe more so and a higher efficiency than I've seen before, and Lowry's one of the best of them.feedback

I thought our guys really battled and the response was great when they did tie it up.feedback

I don't have any reaction until I know things are completed. Once that is a thing and we're made of it aware of it, I'll talk about it. I think the NBA is in a great place. I think we're all hopeful that something like that would happen.feedback

You know what you're getting from Kawhi, and he played great. But I thought those guys really changed the complexion of the game.feedback

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