Russ Smith's Postgame Comments After The Win Over Connecticut

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Video available via the C-J.

On the importance of saturday night's win

I think the team's starting to come together. Everyone wants to win and everyone wants to do well. We're all one right now. We knew how important this game was and everybody focused in. This game was one of the games where it kind of felt like last season with the chemistry, the atmosphere, the rhythm and with what was at stake. So everything was just great.

On if he got caught up in all the talk about the showdown between the team's guards

You know honestly it's really tough not to, because of the media and everybody in your ear, but I felt like both guards on both teams did great jobs of just trying to will their teams to win. I think Shabazz is one of the premier guards in the country, one of the best guards in the country. Boatright as well. I think Terry Rozier held his own as a freshman and I think I contributed when necessary, and everybody stepped up when they had to.

On if the team felt like this was a quality win even though UConn isn't ranked right now

Oh definitely, because they can beat a top 25 team any night of the day. Playing them at home definitely felt like a top 25 environment, so this was a great win. That's how much we respect them, we knew how great they were. I just credit it all to my teammates. They stepped up when needed, they made big baskets and got big defensive rebounds.

Did he stay up late watching Mortal Kombat again?

Nah. What'd I do? I stayed up late and I think I was just chilling. I was just chilling with my boy Sizzle, and that was it. I was probably just making snap chat videos, nothing crazy.

In the play of Montrezl Harrell

He's stepped up and he's starting to put the blame on himself. He's not making any excuses. He's saying if we miss a rebound, that's his fault. He's getting on everyone to hit their man, but if we miss one he's taking all the blame for it. I think for him to do that, it shows great improvement as a leader and as a person. His character is off the charts. He makes everyone around him play harder.

On the hook shot Trez showed Saturday night

Honestly, he was making that in the summer and in the fall, but sometimes it's hard to do it in a game. It's hard to take what you work on and do it in the game. A lot of times I'll be in the gym working on dribbling moves or bounce passing with one hand, and the other game I did it, and it went out-of-bounds. You only know how good you are if you try what you work on in a game. Tonight showed that he's more than capable of hitting those shots.

Is there anything else Trez will show us that we haven't seen?

I don't want to say you haven't seen it, but I don't think you've seen it consistently. I don't think you've seen it again and again. He'll show flashes, because if he's in a position to shoot it, he'll shoot it.

On whether or not Montrezl cares about the U of L dunk record

He just wants to dunk on everybody just because he wants to dunk on everybody. That's just what he wants to do.

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