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June 8, 2021

Paul George

Los Angeles, California, USA

Postgame Press Conference

Utah Jazz 112, Los Angeles Clippers 109

Q. Seemed like Kawhi said you were flat in the first quarter but seemed like you kept up with the pace of the game in the fourth. What are some of the things that stood out to you in a positive manner where you guys can emphasize in Game 2 and try and get the W?

PAUL GEORGE: What are the positives?

Q. Yes.

PAUL GEORGE: I mean, we just continue to give ourselves chances. I think that's the positive. That terrible third quarter to start the half, up, what, 13, 13 or 14 in the third to start it, and we just came out flat. They came out -- I mean, they are playing desperation ball the whole night, and you know, we didn't match it until late.

But I think the positive out of it is we gave ourselves a chance; regardless if we gave this one up with a flat third, still gave ourselves a chance to win this.

Q. You played against Donovan a couple years back, and really seemed like he just willed the Jazz into that second half and they followed his lead. How has he evolved and how tough is he to defend? I know he's still young, but he's developing into a star right now.

PAUL GEORGE: Yeah, I mean, he's just super aggressive. He's super aggressive. He stays in attack mode and you know, he's got a strong body, so he uses that body. He's explosive. I think he showed -- he's showing a lot growth in that area of just putting the team on his back and stepping up as their leader.

Q. Did he do anything that surprised you guys today?

PAUL GEORGE: No, nothing surprising. I think the volume of shots that we allow, that's on us, but nothing surprising. I've seen him being in Oklahoma, you know, for that series and just seeing his growth since I've been in Oklahoma up until this point, his growth has just been upward and he's playing -- he's been playing great this year and he came out and he played great tonight.

Q. Just referring back to that series a couple years ago, I know not trying to get too deep into old stuff, but obviously that crowd has some different energy for you, you at the free throw line, even on the broadcast you mentioned that Utah has got something extra when you play there. How do you kind of lock in and block that out and just play your game, because again, Utah different than a lot of other arenas in the NBA, especially in the playoffs.

PAUL GEORGE: Yeah, I mean, I like it. That part doesn't get to me. You know, it's all respect. I've had good games here. I've had bad games here. That part doesn't get to me. That's part of this game to be honest. Crowds going to be involved. You want that. As an opposing player, you kind of want that.

I just didn't shoot the ball. Fact of the matter, I didn't shoot the ball well tonight. But I'll have a better approach. I thought I was Justin decisive on my approach. But I'll be a little bit better on getting the shots that I want and taking those shots that I want.

Q. Luke Kennard was talking about Utah's physicality. Do you guys feel that they are different than Dallas?

PAUL GEORGE: Ask that again?

Q. The way Utah is physical, and just their physicality, how tough is that and is it different than the first round?

PAUL GEORGE: I mean, it's physicality. It's playoff basketball. The physicality just has to be allowed on both ends and I'll leave it at that.

Q. Is it harder to deal with that when you guys have had two days off after a super-long series or does it make a difference?

PAUL GEORGE: No, not really. You know, we came out and we were the attackers. We were the aggressors. We just had a bad third quarter. That's just as simple as it is. But we came out and we were the aggressors. We were in attack mode. We matched their physicality I thought. We had some plays where we were kind of lethargic, because like I said to start the game off, they were in desperation mode and playing hard and hustling way more than us. So we probably had some plays we wish we could take back.

But that's not an excuse to say the physicality was too much for us having two days off because we started the game off, you know, as the aggressors.

Q. I guess this is just going along same lines. You talked about your indecisiveness. What do you credit your indecisiveness to; you're saying it can't be from the fatigue or turnaround, but was it just -- what do you credit it to?

PAUL GEORGE: Just the shots that they want you to take mid-range, but I think I can do a better job of setting those up. The big fella is really good at just clogging the paint up and just sitting at the rim, and a lot of plays I was just forcing myself trying to get to the basket where he's there waiting for me. So I think just being decisive on approach of setting up, getting the shots that I want while he's in those coverages.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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