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June 1, 2017

LeBron James

Oakland, California: Postgame

Warriors - 113, Cavaliers - 91

Q. From your perspective, what went wrong in that third period? The game was still within reach, and then they broke it open late in the third.
LEBRON JAMES: And that's -- it wasn't just the third quarter, it was the whole game. It started with myself having some turnovers, especially in the first half. I pride myself on not turning the ball over, and I did it too much.

So 20 turnovers for 21 points on the road and 56 points in the paint, we did a great job of covering the 3-point line, but other than that, they played a hell of a game.

Q. One follow-up with that, so much was made about the time off for both teams, any prospect of rust being a factor?
LEBRON JAMES: No, I don't think so. But I also know that you cannot simulate what they bring to the table. No matter how many days that you have to prepare, you can't simulate what they have. So it's great to get the first game up underneath us. We made a lot of mistakes; they capitalized. And we get an opportunity to get a couple days to see what they did and see what we did wrong and how we can be better in Game 2.

Q. If there was one thing that stands out to you about them, whether it's speed or whatever, what would it -- what was it for tonight?

Q. He just -- obviously he hasn't been here in the last two Finals. I mean, what is it about him? What kind of impact does he make? How does he change things?
LEBRON JAMES: I mean, you take one of the best teams that we had ever assembled last year, that we saw in the regular season and in the post-season, and then in the off-season you add a high-powered offensive talent like that and a great basketball IQ like that, that's what stands out.

I mean, it's no if, ands, or buts. It is what it is. We got to figure out how to combat that, which is going to be a tough challenge for us. But that's what stands out.

Q. Doc Rivers said that the Warriors have this penchant for making teams almost concentrate too much on the three. You start to get it in your head that you need to prevent them from 3-pointers, and then the inside opens up. Were you guys victims of that tonight, did you feel that?
LEBRON JAMES: No, we was victims of ourself, for one. Like I said, we had 20 turnovers, and there's no way you're going to win a ball game having 20 turnovers against this team and on the road. But at the end of the day, we gave up a lot in transition. They had 27 points on fast breaks.

Q. Follow-up, Kyrie and you got into a lot of isolation situations. Do you feel like the ball needs to move a little more?
LEBRON JAMES: That's part of our game. That's part of our game. It's what got us here. So we definitely want to be more in the 20s in assists, but that's what got us here. And we got to be able to make shots. We got to be able to move the ball. We know that. But playing iso ball has helped us get to this point, and it has gave us success in the last three years. So we don't want to have a high steady diet of it because the defense becomes stagnant and our players become stagnant, but that's part of our package.

Q. When your offense isn't flowing the way that you're used to and you're turning the ball over the way that you were tonight, what can be done, if anything, to not allow that to carry over to the defensive end?
LEBRON JAMES: Well, I think that -- I mean, a couple instances. First of all, we got to stop the ball in transition. There was a few times where we fanned out to the 3-point line and let guys just go right down the middle for a dunk. And I know, I believe, K.D. had two or three of those. So when you turn the ball over, you got to know that that's their best. That's when they become very dangerous because those guys, they sprint down the lane, they sprint to the 3-point line, they put a lot of pressure on your defense.

But the ball is the number one thing. We got to stop the ball first and then fan out to the 3-point line if those guys go there.

Q. Were you surprised how many times the Warriors drove in and got to the rim tonight?
LEBRON JAMES: No, I wasn't surprised at anything. They are a high-powered offensive team. They can shoot the ball from the perimeter, they can get into the paint. They do everything exceptionally well, if not great. So never surprised by anything that they can do.

Q. As a leader, what is your message to your teammates after a bad lost like this?
LEBRON JAMES: Just get focused on Game 2. We made a lot of mistakes. There's nothing really needs to be said. We know we're capable of playing a lot better. We didn't play as well as we know we're capable of, so we look forward to the next one.

Q. Tristan seemed to have a tough night. A bunch of guys had a tough night. Outside of you, Kyrie, and Kevin, what do you need from the complementary players in this series? What do you need out of them?
LEBRON JAMES: Just to be themselves and do what they have done throughout the course of the season, throughout the course of the last couple years. Play with energy, play with effort, play with their mind and their bodies and understand what we're trying to accomplish.

So it's going to be -- this is The Finals, and we don't care about making mistakes, just play as hard as you can and follow the game plan, have your mind in it. And if your mind is fresh and your mind is into it, then a lot of things take care of itself.

Q. First quarter you had eight free throws, you had four the rest of the game. Do you feel like you could have been doing more driving to the hole? It's one of your strengths, obviously.
LEBRON JAMES: Well, the game is -- I mean, it's played how it's played. I don't know. I mean, first half I had six turnovers, second half I had two. So could I have turned the ball over more in the second half? I mean, the game is just -- the game is just played that way.

MODERATOR: Thank you, LeBron.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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