As Yogi Berra observed, it's deja vu all over again. Another stretch of good play unsustained, another lead frittered away, another deceptive final score -- Orlando had a 20-point lead with 4:26 left before Dallas hit a few shots late and finished it 117-107. Of the eight players who logged more than 10 minutes, not one finished with a positive plus/minus. The Mavericks lose for the first time this season when scoring over 100 points and the Magic fly out of town with their win streak intact and growing.
On the defensive breakdown -- the Magic shot over fifty percent, something that's only happened once this year . . .
"It's gonna start with defensive rebounding. That's gonna get our offense going regardless of who is available. We're always gonna be better when we're coming off of stops. They shot a lot of threes, so there are a lot of long rebounds. And you've got Howard on the inside, who goes after the ball as well as anybody . . . But we did a good job for a good portion of the game, and then they just hit us with a barrage that we couldn't handle." -Coach Rick Carlisle
About Hedu Turkoglu's insane night -- 13 points and 17 (!) assists . . .
"I don't think it's incredible, he should have got 20 . . . You could tell he is a different player now. He is a guy that can do everything." -Jason Richardson
"17 assists for anybody is incredible, but a 6'10" forward with 17 assists, that's a phenomenal, phenomenal game." -Coach Stan van Gundy
Different perspectives on execution . . .
"I just think we didn't play hard. We let them get in their comfort zone and make threes. And when they made their run we never came back." -DeShawn Stevenson
"It wasn't a situation where they were hitting threes wide open -- they were hitting threes with a hand in their face. So, we played our game plan, but they outplayed us." -Tyson Chandler
"We never adjusted to what they were doing to us and it cost us . . . I think they ran the same play 20 or 30 times in a row. It's unbelievable." -Jason Terry
When even the coach leaves early -- with six minutes left Coach Carlisle earned two technicals arguing a call and was excused from the game . . .
"I didn't like the officiating obviously, but that's as much as I'm going to say about it. I think that calls you disagree with are one of the realities of this league, and when you really disagree a lot, you get thrown out of the game." -Coach Rick Carlisle
Speaking of leaving early -- Tyson Chandler picked up his sixth about twenty seconds later after struggling with foul trouble all night. . .
"He's one of our best players, so it hurt." -Coach Rick Carlisle
"It changes things dramatically, because I can't be aggressive as I want to." -Tyson Chandler
Regarding the Ideal, and trying not to slip away from it . . .
"If we're gonna be the team that we say we want to be, regardless of who's in uniform -- if you get a lead you're gonna have to do something about it. You can't just allow teams to come back on you. So, it's been a problem all year long. And until we address it, we'll be sitting here with a sad face." -Jason Terry
A quick nod to former Maverick Brandon Bass, who started for Orlando and scored eleven . . .
"He's a guy that's always ready -- we knew that when he was here. He's an extremely hard worker and he loves to play. So it's no surprise that he's playing well now that he's gotten the opportunity.'' -Coach Rick Carlisle
About the upcoming road trip . . .
"This is very important because we've got to get back on a streak and get back into our winning ways. It's been tough, but with all the guys out we've just got to hold down the fort and be positive. Hopefully, we'll be getting the big fella back and we've got to get back rolling and get back to doing some damage." -Tyson Chandler
And a bit of impatience with That Subject . . .
"Dirk's not here, so let's not talk about Dirk." -Coach Rick Carlisle