Kamar Baldwin drives past a St. John’s defender in Butler’s 80-71 win over the Red Storm on Jan. 19. Baldwin scored a season-high 30 points in the game. Photo by Jimmy Lafakis.
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St. John’s head coach Chris Mullin:
On Jordan Tucker: “He’s a heck of a shooter. He’s obviously a guy that we didn’t want getting threes. … He was the one guy we said we didn’t want shooting threes, and that’s exactly what he did. So that’s a mental mistake, and physically not sticking to the game plan.”
On Kamar Baldwin’s performance: “Basically, he took our guys one-on-one and just drove the ball with straight drives, had 30 points and no assists.”
On his team’s first half defense: “I thought everything was lethargic and soft. We were soft, played back on our heels. And they took advantage of it.”
Butler head coach LaVall Jordan:
On his team’s performance: “They played with an inspiration. It wasn’t perfect by any means. But we had guys on the ground, we got bloody knees, we got bloody lips. Whatever they had to do to earn that win. And it was truly earned.”
On his team’s progress: “I lost my mind a little bit there, and they kept each other together. We’ve been trying to encourage and get more of that type of ownership, and I thought today was a huge step.”
Coach Jordan's thoughts following the win. pic.twitter.com/IbmT2tkVIn
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On a competitive second half: “They got more aggressive in the passing lanes. … We got a couple rebounds that got taken away from us. .. Just fundamental things that seem boring when we’re practicing them, but they’re very important when you’re trying to execute against a high-level team like that.
On the keys to a win against Villanova: “It takes an extreme focus, a high level of passion. … They’ve got … some different personnel that we’ve got to focus in on. You know you have to be sound, you know you have to be tough, and you’ve got to be efficiently offensively to compete in that one.”
On his recent success: “Today, I started it on defense. That picked up my energy and got me going quick. Those two stops, back to back, really helped ignite things. And everything really got going.”
On what’s been the difference in the team’s recent wins: “Better focus for us. We learned our lesson from that Xavier game. I think today we played more to win than just playing the clock not to lose.”
On limiting St. John’s from the perimeter: “We wanted to shrink the paint, just limit their attacks. … We just contested their shots when they did take threes.”