Raptors' Pascal Siakam on his devotion to making the right plays
Raptors forward Pascal Siakam discusses his mindset entering games and how the "right play" can change depending on a series of factors.
- When you're reading a game like last night in the first half, you did some different things. You got nine field goals and then you had the huge second half in the fourth quarter. When you are reading the game, what are you seeing? What are you looking for when you take your shots?
PASCAL SIAKAM: Oh, I think, again, like just knowing that I'm going to get a lot of attention. I think to me like, just trying to make the right plays every time I'm on the floor. And I think the challenge is just keeping that aggressive kind of like, level, like high at all times, basically. But it's hard when you know, like you get that much attention. And I think that I always try to make the right plays.
And, you know, but then there's times where I'm feeling like, you know, I just got to keep going and take whatever is there. Like, like for me I just feel like, you know, like I always feel like I have an advantage, but it's just a matter of like, to help defense and managing that.
- Is the fear becoming too aggressive when you got that all attention, almost to the point of being a little bit reckless, or is that the--
PASCAL SIAKAM: No, never.
- Back up a little bit?
PASCAL SIAKAM: Never. I always feel like I'm in control. And my thing is just continue to make the right plays, like that's my mentality. And sometimes the right play is like, you know, you're going and sometimes you're passing it, or whatever the case might be. So I just try to read that.
- When the energy is dragging and maybe the team's not off to a hot start, Scotiabank Arena can get kind of quiet, or whatever. How do you like change that in the middle of a game? All of a sudden go from low energy to uptempo.
PASCAL SIAKAM: I just got to do it. I don't know how. You just got to figure out. What I know is that I can't have many of these. So I just got to do it.
- Does it feel like there's a sense of urgency with so few games left and the standings are so tight in the East?
PASCAL SIAKAM: There is. I think, I think it's been like that for a while. All these games are important and we have to give our best shot every single night.
- How are you feeling about the team's defense at this point in the season?
PASCAL SIAKAM: I think we're doing, we're doing good. I think, again, we've got to minimize the mistakes, but for the most part, I think we're doing, we're doing good. Obviously not good enough some nights to win some games, but we've done good enough to win also some games. So it is, just got to continue to work hard minimizing mistakes and give ourselves the best shot.
- It feels like some nights you guys are really good at closing out games in the fourth quarter, as you guys had a 7-0 streak at home win streak, but then obviously last night wasn't enough to get it done. What do you feel like that was the difference there? Was it mistakes? Was it tightening something up on defense?
PASCAL SIAKAM: I don't know. You lose some games sometimes. You lose some games. Other team makes shots and you miss them.