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Ricky Davis: "Whatever happened yesterday, happened yesterday"
by Bruce Meyer / November 14, 2002

It's been a tough start to the season for the Cavs so far. What does the team need to do to get things turned around?

Ricky Davis: I think we just need to work out the kinks and keep playing hard and gel a little bit. Everybody's a little off-sync. The team needs to come together a little bit and we'll be alright.

Are you glad to still be in Cleveland after signing the restricted free agent contract and having the Cavs match it?

RD: Definitely. I think it's a great opportunity for me. A great opportunity to come out and change the organization and just make a whole new different organization here in Cleveland.

What are the strengths of your game?

RD: Shooting the ball. Hitting open jump shots. Getting open in the open floor; real energetic; play hard all the time.

It looks like the team is going to be more fun to watch this year than in years past. Do you think the fans will at least get a little bit excited about the team?

RD: We'll get the crowd hyped with excitement with me, Darius and the other guys. I think we'll be alright and bring a lot of fans, and hopefully the excitement will turn into some wins.

Are there going to be many nights like the home opener with the Lakers where you guys look like you could kill anybody?

RD: Definitely. That's probably the best we played all year, or the best the ballclub's played in a couple of years. I just think it's a matter of when we gel and when we can all get together. The faster we can get together, I think the faster we can play like that every night.

Is the struggling to score points as a team, has that kind of blown out of proportion some of the criticism of the point guard position play, with some of the players saying the point guard position needs upgraded or more production out of it?

RD: I think when everybody learns their spots and everybody learns how to play with each other, I think we'll get more scoring. Everybody knows their roles and what they have to do, so I think that will pick up the slack in scoring.

What do you think of the fans who are saying the Cavs should just lose as many games as possible and get a better chance at getting the No. 1 draft pick?

RD: I figure if you do that and lose every game, it's going to be the same thing next year, you know, with another new player coming in and learning the system and learning the game. I think we have to come out this year, play hard, take our wounds and go with the battles and just try to grow for next year.

Does the team have goals in terms of number of wins this year?

RD: We had a goal of maybe 40, 50 wins, but we're just trying to get everybody together first before we can start counting on wins. We're trying to go day by day and work on what we need to do.

Most of the predictions have the Cavs pretty far down, pretty much last in the division. Do you guys kind of have the mentality that you can only exceed expectations?

RD: Exactly. I figure you can't get no worse so you might as well go out there and play as hard as you can and, like I said, try to get us all playing together and playing on the same note. I think we can round up a few wins.

What's Coach Lucas like to play for?

RD: He's a great motivation coach. He gets us going when we need to get going. Days we don't want to come he pumps us up. He's a great coach to go out and play for.

What does he expect out of the players?

RD: He expects us to come out and work hard every night. Do what we're taught and just try to gel together, like I've been saying, and try to come together as one and play together like some of these other playoff teams.

Do you expect he will keep you coming off the bench for the near future? [Ricky Davis was replaced in the starting lineup Wednesday against Dallas after being benched six minutes into Tuesday night's loss against Indiana]

RD: No, not all.

Do you think you'll be back in the starting lineup?

RD: Yeah, I should be.

Do you feel you and Coach Lucas have put the situation from Tuesday behind you for the time being?

RD: Yeah, it's gone. It's out the door. No more said about it. Whatever happened yesterday, happened yesterday.

Did you guys meet before the game and have a heart-to-heart about it?

RD: We met a little bit. You know talked, and everything's good, everything's in place and rolling back on track. Everybody has differences. It's just a matter of coming out and playing hard every night. That's what it's all about.

How does it feel when you get the dunks going and the defense going, and you get the crowd into the game?

RD: It feels great, getting the crowd going. It's just a matter of getting the fans back, getting us back together and trying to turn this ballclub around.

At this point, how important is it to get a win, and not just moral victories?

RD: It's important. We're trying to get every win possible. We've got a real tough schedule here in the beginning so we fight night for night. We've just got to come out and execute the right way and I think we can get a couple more victories.

Bruce Meyer is a regular contributor to HoopsHype.com

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