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What Tommy Lloyd, Kylan Boswell and Luc Krystkowiak said after Arizona’s win over Utah

arizona-wildcats-utah-utes-postgame-tommy-lloyd-kylan-boswell-luc-krystkowiak-interview-pac12-2023 Zachary BonDurant-USA TODAY Sports

Arizona bounced back from last weekend’s loss at Stanford in a big way, blowing out Utah 88-62 on Thursday. It was one of the Wildcats’ best performances of the season, just what they needed after slipping on the road last time out.

But despite the UA (23-4, 12-4 Pac-12) having a history of responding to losses, as well as getting revenge for previous setbacks, coach Tommy Lloyd wasn’t expecting a 26-point win.

“Utah is a good team, they’re obviously much improved from last year,” Lloyd said. “December 1 we went back there and we got our asses kicked.”

Our full recap can be found here. Below is what Lloyd, Kylan Boswell and Luc Krystkowiak said about the victory:

Lloyd on how Utah looked compared to the last meeting: “Obviously having (Gabe) Madsen out hurts a little bit, but we were expecting a tough game. They’re a team that might be hard for us to match up with a little bit, they have skilled big who’s shooting the ball like Dirk Nowitzki, so we had to navigate that, and sometimes getting out on the perimeter can be a little bit tough depends.”

On Azuolas Tubelis getting a technical foul and having to sit most of the 1st half: “Obviously, you don’t plan for that, but you can’t do what Zu did. Zu is a great kid, he’s had an incredible year, but you can’t boot the ball into the stands. This isn’t like, open gym. It’s a game with rules and customs and standards. Obviously it’s a disappointing decision by Zu, but Zu’s had an incredible year. He’s probably had such a good year, he might need a little bit of a dip and kind of reset and refocus. We’ll deal with that tomorrow, he and I’ve already talked about him a little bit, but he’s a great guy, and obviously I’m proud of what he did. He came back and he responded and played better in the second half.”

On what Tubelis didn’t come back in until the 2nd half: “He had two fouls and we’re winning. You’re saving him for the second half in case something happens.”

On not closing out the first half strong the last 2 games: “I think we had a 17-point lead and let them cut it to 12. At Stanford, we had an 8-point lead and had one or two possessions that I would definitely like to have back, and they cut it to three. So we got to finish off those halves better, but we still had the lead at the end of each half.”

On Henri Veesaar: “It’s good to see. Henri, he’s lost a bit of confidence, it happens with young players. I always tell the guys, this is going to be harder than they ever expected. And they don’t believe you. I think he’s finally gotten to the point where he’s maybe got broken down a little bit and realized that we’re right. And he needs to take a step back and open his ears and listen and start working on it. If you listen and work hard together, good things happen, so I was happy that he had a little bit of success today because yeah, I mean, it would be nice to add another player or two to the rotation in case of situations like this.”

On Arizona’s defensive game plan and holding Utah to 10 points in the paint: “We just wanted to play really good, sound defense, and make good decisions defensively. The Stanford game we had good defensive possessions and at the end we made some crazy decisions. Why would you do this or that? Guys made better decisions overall defensively, we kind of were able to contest some of those shooters’ shots and directional the ball to maybe their lesser shooters.”

On taking a lot of mid-range jumpers: “They were giving them to us. It wasn’t any crazy strategy, Zu was wide open at the free throw line, what was he supposed to do? You feel pretty good about that shot. It was just how they were guarding us. We have good players and they have to have the freedom to take and hopefully make those shots.”

On Kylan Boswell: “Kylan is getting much better. And you can see he’s much more comfortable, but there’s still growth to be had. I thought a couple of things, I don’t know why he stopped and snapped the ball behind his back when he could have continued to put pressure on a big. He realizes when he’s making those mistakes.”

On guards Kerr Kriisa and Courtney Ramey: “I thought they were veterans, they were rock solid. They did a really good job to hunt the right shots and kind of playing loose and aggressive on offense and going downhill, use those ball screens to kind of put some pressure on the defense.”

On Kryskowiak getting into the game against his former team: “Happy for Luc. We call him Lucky, because we have another Luke on the team. I wanted to give him the opportunity to play today. He and his family have nothing but good things to say about Utah, so it wasn’t anything like that. It was just his time. He grew up on that campus, and I’m sure playing against Utah has a special meaning. For him to have the opportunity to score a basket is really cool, and I know his teammates are really happy.”

On playing Colorado for the first time on Saturday: “We’re familiar with Colorado, but it’s what it is. It’s the NCAA Tournament, you play one day, have a quick turnaround against someone you’ve never played. You better lock in and figure it out. This is what I know: when they’ve been right and they’ve been able to play they can almost beat anybody. Maybe they haven’t consistently been at that level, but I know about level is attainable for them. So they have our full attention.”

Boswell on Krystkowiak scoring: “That was a very special moment for all of us. To see him go in and get a bucket, how the bench reacted, everything. This team is very loving, very family oriented.”

On playing without Tubelis most of the 1st half: “We know Zu is a special part of our team. But we know how to play with four guys, whatever the situation may be.”

On taking mid-range jumpers: “I think everybody just started realizing it (was open) because they were sagging.”

On his improvement: “At the beginning of the season I was super nervous coming off the injury, but I’m playing a lot more minutes now and all those nerves (have) gone away.”

On Veesaar’s performance: “He’s stoked about it right now in the locker room. Hit a three, he was really impressive coming in, he made a big impact for us.”

Krystkowiak on scoring against Utah: “It felt read good. I know a lot of those guys on the roster, it was really good seeing them. That bucket for me was pretty special.”

On his time with the Utes: “It was a great time. My first year I was a redshirt freshman and then that second year was that COVID year. A lot of ups and downs through it all, but all in all it was a great experience.”

On if he got a text from his father (former Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak) after the game: “I did. He’s having a great time, he loved that.”

On what his dad is doing: “He’s just being a dad. I’ve got two sisters, so he’s down in San Diego just enjoying his time, golfing a lot. We’ll see where he ends up next, if he does. He’s a big supporter of our team. He comes down to Tucson a lot, just to watch practice and talk with the guys.”