What the Spurs, T’wolves said after Wednesday’s game

The Spurs and Timberwolves were talkative in the locker rooms after San Antonio’s 116-100 victory Wednesdaynight.

The good folks from the Spurs media services office were there to collect some of what they said.

Spurs coach Gregg Popovich

(Any word on Tony Parker?)

“I think they said mild hamstring, so we won’t know much until tomorrow.”

(How did you feel like Gary Neal did filling in the second half?)

“Gary did a great job for a two guard.  He did a great job.  He’s not a one (guard), but I think he kind of likes it for some strange reason.  We are happy that he can do what he does at that position and Manu does it a little bit, so the two of them kind of share it.”

(Talk about Tim Duncan setting the tone early on the boards…)

“Tim’s been really fresh all year long.  I’m really enthused about his health and his body…the way he’s taking care of himself.  He’s got quickness and he’s got more agility than he’s had in a while.  He’s had it for the whole season, so it’s been fun to watch.”

(Is that as good of a job as you’ve done keeping Kevin Love from dominating?)

“I think so. I thought the guys were really focused on that and at the same time, I think he helped us out.  I think he was hurting a little bit.  I don’t know what it was but I think it’s his back or something.  He looked like he was a little stiff tonight, so he helped us out too.”

(How do you think Kawhi Leonard did against him in the post?)

“He and Jack kind of shared it down there.  I think they busted their butts trying to keep him from catching it, so he definitely had fewer catches than he would have had if we had just had a big standing behind him someplace.  So, they did a good job.”

Spurs guard Manu Ginobili:

(On filling in for Tony Parker after leaving with an injury…)

“We have been doing this for short periods of time. The mindset was the same. We tried to get everybody involved and create. This did not change much. You know your role and it is just different. I think we did pretty well.”

 (On Parker’s injury with back-to-back-to-back game coming up…)

“It is very bad. Everybody knows how important Tony Parker has been for us right now. It is going to be difficult. We need to figure out. Great teams figure it out. Whether you are missing a player or not you have to find a way.”

(On his minutes and play…)

“Today I felt pretty good. The best I have felt. I was very happy about it. I played 25 minutes. I know I did not play 35 but I felt good and my legs are starting to respond better. They are not cramping or hurting now. I have to see tomorrow how I feel, but I am optimistic because it is the best I have felt.”

Spurs forward Stephen Jackson:

(On first game back in this arena…)

“We won. That’s what I am all about. I am glad to be here on a team that wins. It feels good to finally get back on the court and get this first home game out of the way. I did not have too many jitters because I have been doing this for a long time. To be able to get out there and win this game is great.”

(On shooting his 3-point shots)

“A lot of those shots just came through the offense and gave me wide-open looks. We practice this everyday and these are the shots we are going to get with this offense. We just need to knock them down.”

(On how it was playing with Tim Duncan again…)

“This is the Tim I have always known. He is moving great. From watching him last year to now, he definitely looks like the old Tim Duncan. To get where we want to be, we are going to need him to play like that.”

(On Tony Parker coming out in the second quarter…)

“Things are going to be difficult for us playing without Tony. We are in a good position with Ginobili being able to play point and move the ball. We just have to figure it out. We did not expect for this to happen but Gary Neal and Manu Ginobili are picking up the slack.”

Timberwolves center Kevin Love:

(Do you feel like the Spurs were making a big effort to keep you off the glass?)

“Yeah, as a group. They did a good job on the offensive boards. They had three days of rest and we just seemed to not have any legs, me included.”

(Did they seem like a different team since the last time you both played each other?)

“Yes, they are in playoff mode. You can tell and they’re ready for the post-season.”

(Is there a fatigue factor?)

“Yeah, we need a full roster if we’re going to win against teams like this. It’s tough. I know it wasn’t just me. It was the whole team. We just didn’t have our legs.”

 (How much does Nikola Pekovic not playing effect the team?)

“(Pekovic) is huge for us. He’s the guy we can throw it into and know we can get easy buckets and keep the other team off the glass. It was tough for us.”

Timberwolves guard Jose Barea:

(What does a team like this learn from a game like this tonight?)

“We played against a tough team tonight. They are playing really good. You have to give San Antonio a lot credit. We didn’t come ready. We started bad and we started the second half bad. They played with more energy and it’s tough without a center. We have to definitely play with some more energy on Friday and see what happens.”

(On playing without Nikola Pekovic Friday?)

“We have done a good job of bouncing back this year. I know we’re going to play a lot harder on Friday and with more energy. We definitely have to defend better.”

(What makes Tim Duncan so impressive for so long?)

“He’s just so smart. I think his coach (Popovich) helps him out a lot. I think their system and they way they have been running it for years shows they’re good at it.”

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