Come the second half, it all changed. Westbrook sank five of his seven shots. He turned the ball over only once — and the giveaway didn’t occur until the final minute, when the game was mostly decided. Morrow doesn’t consider the turnaround a coincidence. “I’ve seen Scott chew his ass out before. And every single time that happened, Russ responded in a positive way. Every time,” said Morrow, an esteemed veteran in that locker room. “So, I think he respects it. He respects Scott. And I think that just seeing the way that they move, it was different than how they move with other people on the team. And I can understand that. Scott was a point guard. He saw something in Russ that was special and said, ‘He’s my point guard. No matter what anybody says, he’s my point guard.’”
June 13, 2021 | 6:43 pm EDT Update
Michael Scotto: Giannis Antetokounmpo on PJ Tucker: “He keeps making everything tough on KD (Kevin Durant). He’s vocal. He’s a leader. He pushes us to be great. He’s definitely a big piece of this organization and this team. He’s going to keep helping us. We definitely need him moving forward.”
Gerald Bourguet: Monty Williams on whether the Suns are locked in heading into Game 4: “How could you not be? It’s the playoffs. I believe we have a great level of focus….I think our guys will be ready to go, I think they’re ready to play right now.”
Eric Walden: Clippers’ Nic Batum said his job in this series to put Rudy Gobert into unfamiliar situations and take him away from the hoop. Said his national-team familiarity with Rudy and his friendship don’t make it any easier, because Rudy “is the best in the league” defensively.
Mirjam Swanson: Nicolas Batum on his comfort playing at the 5: “It’s new for me… so I’m learning, a learning process for me during the playoff. I just do my best to make life easier for my two superstars. And Reggie and Luke.”
June 13, 2021 | 6:29 pm EDT Update
Harrison Wind: Michael Malone pregame says his team still believes but that Phoenix has outplayed them and outcoached them so far this series. He says it will be very easy to tell early on tonight if his team’s belief is “real, or it’s all talk.”