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May 26, 2016

DeMar DeRozan

Toronto, Ontario: Practice Day

Q. If they play as aggressively, trap as aggressively as they were last night, what's the remedy to that?
DeMAR DeROZAN: Be more prepared for it, be able to counter it. We really didn't do a great job of countering how they came at us. They were aggressive. Now we've got to meet their aggression with aggression.

Q. Can you put your finger on why the energy dipped?
DeMAR DeROZAN: A great team like that loses two games in a row, the only way you're supposed to respond is to come out with that type of energy, and they did. We didn't play like a team that lost two in a row. We kind of eased up a little, and we can't have that lapse. Now understanding how we got beat, coming back on our home floor, we've got to use that as motivation.

Q. Does that maybe speak to the overall maturity of your group, that these moments like last night you couldn't get that killer instinct?
DeMAR DeROZAN: I don't know why we get so comfortable once we put ourselves in a tougher situation. We've been doing it all year, and we always come back and bounce back even better. I think we just thrive off adversity at the end of the day.

Q. What do you think of the story that's going around about DeMarre [Carroll] and Cory [Joseph]?
DeMAR DeROZAN: It's crazy to me. It made no sense. I was in the room that night until 4 o'clock in the morning watching "Superman Versus Batman." Would that be a story? That's how much nonsense it makes to me.

Q. Why would you suffer through that?
DeMAR DeROZAN: I was upset after I watched it. (Laughter.) Superman dies. It hurts. We don't need to see that.

Q. For a guy in your job, what are your hours like?
DeMAR DeROZAN: Terrible. Terrible. I've been like this for a while. I don't know the last time I was in bed before 2:30, 3 o'clock. A lot of times I'd just be leaving the gym at 1 o'clock, 2 o'clock in the morning just from shooting or doing an ice tub, whatever it may be. We don't have a routine schedule. It's not like we work from 9 to 5 or anything like that where we have to be up early. We deal with a lot of energy that we only get to exert probably two and a half hours out of the day, and that's when we're playing. The rest of the day there are other things we try to do to have a life.

Q. In elimination games so far, you've attempted the most shots of any game that you've had this season. Does that have to be the formula tomorrow night for you guys to again avoid being sent home?
DeMAR DeROZAN: I mean, yeah. That just shows you that me and the rest of the guys don't want to go home. We're going to do whatever it takes, anything possible, anything physically we can do on that court to make sure that that doesn't happen. It's a challenge that I always look forward to. It's one of the moments that it's hard to duplicate unless you're in that moment to be able to do what needs to be done.

Q. The eight shots, is that more a credit to the Cavs' defense last night or lack of aggressiveness?
DeMAR DeROZAN: Just lack of aggressiveness. We weren't prepared really for them blitzing, taking the ball out of me and [Kyle Lowry's] hands, to have a counter for that. We worked on a few things today, so try to work on that and make sure that that works in the game tomorrow.

Q. Whether you guys have won or lost in these playoffs we sort of wonder if it will carry over, and the answer always seems to be no, no matter what the result is. Do you still believe in playoff momentum, or does it not exist?
DeMAR DeROZAN: You know, honestly you can't get too high and get too low, because you don't want to affect your next game, your next performance. We understand we lost, whether we lost by one point or 50 points. It was a loss, and we understand what's at stake this next game for us.

Q. Kyle was in here and he said -- we asked him about the aggression part, how aggressive they were trapping, and he mentioned the Washington series. How many times a year do you feel that kind of aggressive trapping?
DeMAR DeROZAN: You really don't get it too often because we did a great job all year countering it, expecting it. Throughout the playoffs, we really haven't seen it as much as we did yesterday. So it was just a new adjustment that we're going to have to figure out. We've been doing it all playoffs, finding a counter. And not just for me and Kyle, just for everybody else to get easy shots, understanding where we can get easy shots at and move the ball.

Q. When you do get trapped like that, the guys around you have to be aware as well?
DeMAR DeROZAN: Yeah, just everybody. We've got to be on one accord. A lot of times it's for us to get off the ball early and understand on our back side we can have 4-on-3. We've got to take advantage of that. Other guys got to be ready to make plays, and it's on us to be able to get off the ball early.

Q. Not to take away from what obviously the team's ultimate goal is, but for as long as you've been here, can you try to conceptualize what it's like to be in Game 6 in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Cavs tomorrow night?
DeMAR DeROZAN: I'll be honest with you. It's hard to even believe when you're in these moments because you're in these moments to do what you love to do, and you really don't look at the outside, how they're looking at you. We've been taking this thing every single day, trying to figure out ways to be better, get better and win games. Yu probably really won't realize how big it is until after we've done -- get to sit back and look on it. But like I tell all the guys, we've got to treat this like it's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity because some guys don't get to be in a Game 6 of a Conference Finals.

Q. Will you really take tomorrow night in?
DeMAR DeROZAN: Yeah, you have to. I think the last two Game 7s, that's how the moment has been. You've got to treat it that way.

Q. Is there a difference between getting excited about those moments and having a clear head?
DeMAR DeROZAN: You just got to go out there and not think. You have a clear head, but you've just got to go out there and whatever you do, you can't let anything go by. You can't second-guess anything. You can't worry about a last miss. You can't worry about a last turnover. It's all about what you can do next to help the team win.

Q. You have games so quickly so there's not much time to think about the last one. But does a game like last night stay with you, or are you able to just look forward?
DeMAR DeROZAN: No, you've just got to look forward. We're looking forward to playing on our home court, where we've been great, feeling that energy of our building, of our fans. Just driving to the arena, seeing all the Raptors jerseys, seeing the fans lining up outside, waiting for you to get ready for the game. That type of energy, that's something you look forward to, and you just forget what happened last.

Q. Last two games here you had pretty solid games both outings. With free agency coming up, do you look at this a little bit differently and go, I have to give a little bit extra, I don't want to go home just yet?
DeMAR DeROZAN: I love my job. All these guys love their job and love what we're doing, this opportunity. You want to try to take advantage of it all, especially when you know you're so close to something that you grew up watching other guys do and compete for every single year.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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