Dan Hughes - San Antonio Silver Stars Head Coach
Dan Hughes: Well, I thought, you look at the game, I thought the second quarter gave them separation that we had to play to. I thought we started well. I honestly thought we ended well. But the second quarter put a separation factor and I thought they did a great job of creating penetration and finding open shots that we didn't put a lot of pressure on. I thought Katie Smith got it going well, but Franklin was especially troublesome to us in that situation. I love the fact my team made a good comeback. I think we learned some things in this basketball game. Obviously didn't learn enough. But I do think as the game transitioned, you know, we were more in a flow that I hoped we would create.
Q: With you being down with your guard situation, just how tough did that make it, especially as much pressure as they could put on?
DH: A couple things happened. The congestion on Becky, they had massive congestion in that situation. A lot of times, we bring another shooter in that situation to aid Becky. You also bring another primary ball handler that allows Becky to play in situations off the ball more in regard to that. I thought VJ did a great job. She's a little banged up as you can see. But she played a good game. You know, it will be helpful to us to add one more guard to our rotation in that situation so we can spread the floor a little bit and move the basketball, especially with Becky, two situations where we bring it to her as opposed to her considering to create a play. They gave her a lot of attention and did a good job of bringing multiple people to it in situations, so we will have to take a look at that and hopefully make some adjustments in Game 2.
Q: I guess going into the game worrying about Smith and Deanna Nolan, and how much did their big players hurt you as far as maybe game plan-wise?
DH: We knew they were good. That was obvious. I thought they established Braxton in the first half and we did good job as the game went on. Taj McWilliams-Franklin had great finishes and she made shots. To her credit, she made shots. I think that was the difference-maker. I thought her ability to finish, especially from the face-up position, really spread our defense out a little bit.
Q: Does the lack of backcourt depth worry you with the injuries you are having right now?
DH: Well, I don't know if it worries me. I think we've got to make some adjustments; if, in fact, we are going to play with a seven-player rotation. We may have to go look at bringing another player in and playing bigger in some situations, something we have not done all year. You're really not anxious to experiment in the WNBA Finals. But the simple reality of having two guards out and having Vickie in a situation where we have to get her in and out a little bit, we have to look at maybe some personnel situations that might help us counter act that and hopefully some healing takes place in the next couple of days.
Ann Wauters - San Antonio Silver Stars Center
Q: Y'all closed, tied at 69, with just a little bit left and kind of what happened that last minute and a half?
Ann Wauters: I think I can talk about it, because it was kind of my mistake. I switched out on Deanna Nolan, who came out for a three and I think Erin got stuck a little and Taj had a layup or a foul -- or was it Braxton? Braxton, I think. So those are mistakes that can be fixed -- it's pretty hard, especially in that last minute where we put all of that effort to come back in the game, which was good, you know, like as a team, even when we are down 10, 13, we still came back. That's good for us to know that even in those situations, we don't back down and we just fight. But then it was, of course, disappointing for us that we could not close it and especially in that first game at home that we couldn't get away with a win.
Becky Hammon - San Antonio Silver Stars Guard
Q: Talk about the second quarter and the hole you guys ended up digging for yourselves. How hard it was to fight back?
Becky Hammon: I thought we let them get too comfortable offensively [in the second quarter]. Defensively, we just werenít ourselves in that first half. Itís disappointing to come out and lack energy in a game like that. I thought we lacked some energy, and thereís just no excuse for that. You canít do that against quality teams. Every mistake we made, they capitalized on. Thatís what good teams do. We have to learn from our mistakes and make fewer of them in this next game.
Q: Any idea as to why you would lack energy in the Game 1 of the Finals?
BH: No idea whatsoever. Maybe we were taking this home court for granted. You just canít be comfortable. You have to understand that home court is great, but you still have to go out there and put in the work. They came in with a more determined mentality, and that canít happen again on our court. Not only that, but now we have to go get one on their court.
Q: Was that second quarter the difference in the game?
BH: I thought it was a series of things [throughout the game], like some little things that we could have done better. Itís a shame to drop that first game, just a shame. We got a lot of work ahead of us. The thing is, itís correctable. I think that just pretty much even things up. We have no home court advantage. Now itís just going out and playing all-out. This next one is crucial for us.
Q: Even with the loss, how pleased are you that you were able to fight back in the fourth quarter? You were down 14 and were able to tie it up?
BH: When you bury yourself and get yourself in a hole like that, pretty much everything has to go your way. Weíre a little dinged up Ė we didnít have any subs. Maybe that played a part down the stretch not being able to hit shots when you donít have your legs. Hopefully with another day of rest [weíll play better]. You know, weíre not afraid to go on the road, either. We have take care of this one at home, and then we just have to steal one.
Q: Talk about the series now shifting to a best-of-5 instead of a best-of-3.
BH: Well, weíve been in this situation before with dropping the first game to L.A. [in the conference finals]. We lost the first one to L.A. and then had to come in here and win two. We have a good road record, so weíre not afraid of that, but first things first on Friday.
Q: You talked about your legs. How much did the depleted bench affect you down the stretch?
BH: I donít know. I guess you really canít make excuses at this point. Legs or no legs, you still have to buckle down and make plays. I just thought that Taj McWilliams-Franklin was hurting us and maybe we just let them get too comfortable offensively. You have to make sure that you come out and give them difficult looks and difficult defenses for 40 minutes. We didnít disrupt their momentum at all. Like I said, we fought back, but we just didnít have enough to overcome it.
Q: Last game you got aggressive going down the fourth quarter. This game you were similarly aggressive in the fourth quarter down the stretch. Do you need to get more aggressive early on and then change it up, or can you continue this way?
BH: I take what they give me. When it comes down to needing to speed up the game, then I need to speed up the tempo because I have the ball, then everybody speeds up off me. We got into a situation where we had to play a little bit of hurry-up offense, and we just canít dig ourselves a hole like that again. We have to finish our quarters strong.
Erin Buescher - San Antonio Silver Stars Forward
Q: The Silver Stars managed to get a big lead down to a tie game, what was the difference late in the game?
Erin Buescher: To be down like we were in the game tonight and then come back and not take of business is frustrating. But, the good thing is that we have four games ahead of us and we need to take care of business in the series. We are a team that is able to play well, even if one thing is taken away. We can still get the job done. We gave ourselves an opportunity to be in the game at the end. We are a self-correcting team and we will have to make adjustments before Friday. Everyone hates to lose; none of us are discouraged to the point that we wonít be able to correct what we did wrong. The Shock definitely capitalized on every mistake we made tonight and it hurt.
Q: What does the team have to fix before Friday nightís game against Detroit?
EB: We have to take to heart our errors and mistakes. I think we all take credit and responsibility for our role in the loss tonight. The game on Friday presents us another chance to win and get better. We had a lot of turnovers tonight and we ended up shooting ourselves in the foot. I like the quick turnaround because we can get onto the next game.
Ruth Riley - San Antonio Silver Stars Center
Q: How come the second chance points hurt you so bad?
Ruth Riley: They are a great rebounding team. Itís has been our Achillesí heel for us this season. Itís something weíre going to look at and try and correct.
Q: How big was that second quarter and them outscoring you 27-14 in the quarter? It proved to be a pretty big difference. Do you thing that was difference in the game, or was it one of a series of things?
RR: Well, anytime youíre down by that much and you have to fight back against a great team, itís very difficult. You have to keep it closer or push for a lead, so that second quarter hurt us.
Q: The fact that the team lost to L.A. in a similar fashion and dug yourself a hole, does that help experience-wise? Youíve been there before and you know you can come back from this?
RR: I think weíve been a great team all year at correcting and making adjustments. We had that experience in the L.A. series, and we lost a home game here in the Sacramento series. I think that weíre experienced enough to come back and refocus and give it another shot.
Q: Do you think this is a wake-up call for this team considering the circumstances?
RR: Yes it is, and we know that. I think that weíre going to do the best job we can in watching some film tomorrow. We realize whatís at stake here.
Q: Did you notice a different level of play in the Finals? Did you feel it was more intense? More urgent?
RR: Honestly I havenít, because we fought so hard to get here. Every game that weíve played, whether it be Sacramento or L.A., itís been a high-intensity game just to put us in this position. Itís has been a battle all the way through.
Q: Do you feel like you were pressing when you got down?
RR: Weíre usually a good three-point shooting team. Theyíre a great defensive team as well. They took away some things. Weíre going to make some adjustments.
Q: This Finals series is up to five games instead of three games. How much does that change the dynamic of this series?
RR: Obviously, it helps us a little bit now, because losing this first game at home. But either way, our next game is very significant, and we realize that. You canít drop two at home, so weíre definitely going to do our best to get the next one.
Sophia Young - San Antonio Silver Stars Forward
Q: Can you just talk about the defense, the looks they gave you early to get you in that hole and how you can adjust going forward?
Sophia Young: Detroit is a good defensive team and they kind of crowd inside a lot early and we were not able to get as many post touches as we usually do. That's something we've got to work on and find ways where we can move the ball around and get screens on the outside for guards to knock some shots down.
Q: You approach this as being just another game but how much did it take you to get used to being in The Finals and the atmosphere and things like that?
SY: Well, you know, we can't make an excuse and say, oh, it's the first time in The Finals, because I guess that's just for lazy people and we are not in that category. Tonight, we were not ourselves. We were not doing things that were us. We went away from a lot of things that we had done to get us to this point, and that's something that we definitely need to work on. They came out shooting and they came out really hot. We can give them credit; they out-played us tonight.
Q: When Becky has a game where she's struggling early to get her shot, how does that affect the way you guys play, or does it?
SY: Well, Becky is one of the best scorers on the team, and those kind of things are going to happen. So it's just up to us to pick her up. I don't necessarily think that we should be like, oh, Becky is not scoring and we are not going to win. So I think there's a lot of mental mistakes that we have made also in the game and most of our shots were not falling. Now that's something that we can definitely work on and find different ways to get Becky open probably and find other ways to get other people involved to score.