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NBA FINALS: CAVALIERS v WARRIORS


June 10, 2015


LeBron James


CLEVELAND, OHIO: Practice Day

Q.  Are you able to describe how much will and determination factor into winning?
LEBRON JAMES:  It's really hard to describe.  You just try to give everything that you have to your teammates and live with the results.  You know, for me, I just try to put it all on the line to a point where win, lose or draw, you're satisfied with the outcome.

Q.  One a little bit out of left field.  You're known as King James.  The Australian government has the power to knight citizens of our country.  Would you endorse Sir Dellavedova?
LEBRON JAMES:  (Laughing).  That's pretty cool.  Whatever is in the favor of good for Delly, I'm all for it.  So whatever that guy wants or needs, I'm all for.

Q.  We'll take that as a yes.
LEBRON JAMES:  Yeah.

Q.  Could you describe just what this reunion has been like with the fans in Cleveland, considering the emotion was probably on the sour side when you left, and the way they've welcomed you, did you have any concern with how they'd embrace you once you got back?
LEBRON JAMES:  I think time heals all.  It was a bitter moment when I left the first time, but it's a sweet moment here now that I'm back.  Both sides had an opportunity to kind of miss each other, and they say if it's worth having and it's supposed to be there, then it will always come back.
That's the example it is today, and I'm happy to be back.  I know the fans are excited and exuberant about me being back.  Not only just about me, this team, putting this team back in the position where they can compete and have something to talk about from our side, the basketball side.  And it's been pretty cool so far.

Q.  Toughness, the word toughness in sports can mean so many different things.  What does it mean to you, and how does your definition of it relate to this team?
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, like you said, it could have so many different meanings from physical toughness to mental toughness, spiritual toughness.  You have to be put in so many different examples and so many different forms and able to see the tough when it comes out.
I think from our team, we have a little bit of it all.  Just the adversity that we faced not only in the postseason but all season.  The toughness as far as physical, the injuries that we faced.
The ups and downs that we've had throughout the season, being 19 and 20 at one point.¬† Now to making the trade and having to go through another tough transition, to our All‑Star forward being out for the season.¬† Now to our All‑Star point guard being out for the season, and that's being able to still stay at bay.
It shows so many different forms of toughness that we've had throughout the season, and especially in the postseason.

Q.  It's obvious the physical toll that this is taking on you.  How mentally taxing is this?  I'm not sure we've ever seen you have to be so laser focused and calculating during games.
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, I don't know.  You say how much it's taken out of me.  I want it to take it all.  Then after the game I'm able to kind of decompress for a little bit.
Obviously I'm not getting much sleep.  You guys can see I'm not getting much sleep right now, but I'm okay with that.  I'm okay with not sleeping to be able to prepare myself and mentally keep myself intact on what's the main objective for me right now, and that is to make sure that my guys are laser sharp, get myself mentally prepared, physically prepared to go out and battle.
It's been a difficult challenge, a tough challenge, but I knew that.  Being the sole leader of a team and a franchise, it's taxing, but I accept the challenge.  I accept it all, and I'm okay with it.

Q.¬† Could you talk a little bit about Delly, a follow‑up on kind of the junkyard dog attitude he brings to this team?
LEBRON JAMES:¬† Well, Delly comes from a rugby background.¬† And if any of you guys ever have an opportunity to ever watch a rugby game, you see how tough it is, and that's what it's about.¬† He just‑‑ he brings it all.¬† Everything that he has, he lays out on the floor.¬† I think he dove on the ground last night, an NBA Finals record, six times (laughing).¬† Last night, and last night he was on the ground again after the game in the hospital, so you could probably say seven times.
He gives us everything that he has, and we all appreciate it as his brothers in the lineup beside him.

Q.  I'm sure you're aware of the historic performances in The Finals.  Does it feel like something legendary is happening on the court, or is that something you'll be able to put in perspective when the series is over?
LEBRON JAMES:  I truly don't feel it.  I don't go home and turn on the TV and watch highlights and watch the coverage of the games.  I went home last night and I turned on "Chopped."  I watched "Chopped" last night and then "Teen Titans" after that at 2:30 in the morning.
So I don't really know what's going on.¬† I know we're up 2‑1.¬† I know our team is fighting for our lives.¬† We're undermanned.¬† We're undermatched, and we're fighting.¬† That's all I know.¬† Me and my brother Maverick, we always talk and say that at some point probably when I'm done we'll sit back and gather a lot of my playoff games, get a couple bottles of wine and enjoy it and watch it and say okay, those were some special times.¬† But right now I don't feel it.

Q.  I haven't seen it yet, but a lot of people reading about it online last night, liked your segment with Dwyane Wade.  How would you assess his ability on our side of the room, and did he get the secret motivation?  Did he find out the answer?
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, first of all, it's great to always see him and be alongside him.  No matter if it's in a uniform or he's in a suit and I'm in street clothes.  I thought he was great.  Obviously our chemistry is great.  Obviously you guys knew you all could lull me in with him.  You guys used D Wade to get me there.  Which is cool.  I understand that.  I know.
And he tried to get the secret motivation out of me, and I didn't give it to him either, even though I told him.  But he won't tell you guys, though.  He won't tell you all until hopefully after this is all over.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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