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June 3, 2017

LeBron James

Oakland, California: Practice Day

Q. You talked about preparation. Did you prepare differently for this NBA Finals than you prepare the rest of the regular season?
LEBRON JAMES: No. It's the same way I prepare for every game. I don't take for granted the opportunity to play in this game. So it's been the same.

Q. How will playing with pace assist you in Game 2?
LEBRON JAMES: Well, you can't play with pace when you turn the ball over. That's one thing we did in Game 1 that we're going to be very conscious about going into Game 2, especially on their home floor.

We're a team that plays with pace. We know that. And in order for us to be as good as we can be offensively, we have to play with pace. But we have to control the ball as well.

Q. Have you done any simulations inside your mind on getting a good start on Game 2, or is it something that you go with the flow?
LEBRON JAMES: I don't simulate anything in my mind. I just think about the game plan. I think about the matchups and things that we can do better.

So we have today, and we're going to prepare tomorrow as well. Get ready for the game. We'll be ready for the challenge.

Q. How can you exploit those pick-and-roll situations that you guys did so amazingly in the last Finals?
LEBRON JAMES: We have to be much better. Game 1 was the feel-out for us, and they definitely took advantage of all our miscues. We just have to get better.

Q. Is getting more physical something that you need to do?
LEBRON JAMES: That's always been something that we talk about, so we look forward to seeing what we can bring to the game in Game 2.

Q. Coach Lue said this is the best team he's ever seen. Do you agree with that?
LEBRON JAMES: I've seen a lot of great teams, and they rank right up there. They work well together. They have some guys that can actually lead a franchise without anybody else by themselves. They put you in tough positions defensively and offensively, so you have to be able just to keep your composure, stick to the game plan and try to execute as best as you can for sure.

Q. Winning a road game in 30 straight in playoff series, what does it mean to be able to go on the road and have so much success?
LEBRON JAMES: I don't know. For me, I approach every game the same way, no matter if I'm at home or on the road. But I understand the road is very challenging, especially when you get to this level -- you get to The Finals, you get to the Eastern Conference Finals. It's very difficult to win on the road, and I've been fortunate to be able to do that in my career.

Q. Is it weird the last time you didn't get one was (indiscernible)?
LEBRON JAMES: No, it's not. I don't even know about the stats of my career until someone brings it up. So I don't get caught up in what I've done over the years. I get drawn in too much of what I'm doing right now in the present, and my only focus is what I can to help this team be better for Game 2.

Q. How do you get Korver more involved?
LEBRON JAMES: It's going to be in the flow. When it's least expected, he's going to knock down some shots. He actually had some great looks in Game 1, two of them in the first half for sure where he had some wide-open ones and just wasn't able to connect. One right before the halftime he had one at the top of the key, wasn't able to connect.

So we always like to get him involved. He does a great job of spreading the floor for us. And when he's going, the rest of our team does as well.

Q. What does picking up the pace look like? Does that fall on you and Kyrie?
LEBRON JAMES: Pretty much. It falls on the ball handlers -- myself, Kyrie, D-Will [Deron Williams], Shump -- that bring the ball up the floor. But also it's guys just running wide. We all have to just run out, create space, create opportunity early in the offense before the defense gets set, where they're really good at.

Q. You always talked about the difference between aggressive turnovers and unforced turnovers. When you look at the film from Game 1, did you see more of one or the other?
LEBRON JAMES: We had a lot of unforced turnovers. Some of them was aggression. I had two charges -- that's aggression, I can take those. But I also had some where I got caught up in the air, trying to make some skip passes, and they were able to pick them off. Those are like pick-sixes. It's like throwing the ball to Deion Sanders. For the most part, it's going to be a touchdown going the other way.

So there's a fine line. You'll have some of those tight turnovers where guys are getting into the lane and trying to make a play -- that's okay. But once you get caught up in the air or you're just swinging the ball carelessly and they're picking those off, you can't have those.

Q. What can Tristan Thompson do to be more effective on the floor?
LEBRON JAMES: Be himself.

Q. Golden State was so successful in Game 1 even though two of their top stars didn't get much going offensively. Does that pass through your mind?
LEBRON JAMES: No, no. At the end of the day they have so many -- it's not about scoring. If you know Draymond, first of all, scoring is the last thing in his mind. He's going to always guard one of the best players on the opposing end. He's going to get rebounds, he's going to get guys involved and he's going to use his basketball IQ. Klay had some good looks and they just didn't go in.

We don't get involved in who didn't play well, who played what. Their team played well, and that's all that matters.

Q. You and Randy [Mims] and Mav [Maverick Carter] and Rich [Paul] have been together for so long. Their impact over the last 10 years in terms of easing everything else and allowing you to concentrate on what you need to concentrate on. How important has that been?
LEBRON JAMES: It's been very important. I think that not only as far as them being able to handle things off the floor so I can focus on basketball, the biggest thing Maverick, Raymond and Rich have given me is that if I'm messing up they're saying, what they hell are you doing. You need to snap back, whatever you're doing, that's not how we do it. When you have people around you like that who not just along for the ride and just always saying yes and saying you're doing well even though you're not, that shapes you. That shaped me. It shaped me to become who I am today.

They stay on me constantly. If there's something they don't see to be in my right judgment, then they tell me. When you have that open dialogue and that respect for each other as men, it definitely allows me to not only be a better basketball player but a better man, a better husband, a better friend, things of that nature, a better dad. They've allowed me to be comfortable being me.

Q. How important is it to have somebody thhat you don't have to put them through the BS detector? You know it's real.
LEBRON JAMES: Right. Just the years we've been together. I've known Maverick since I was 5, I've known Randy since I was 8 and I've known Rich since I was 14, 15. We have been around this whole thing, we have seen it all and we kind of grew up together. To know that they're not going to sugarcoat anything with me, no matter if I like it or not, it means everything.

Q. How do you block out the noise and what do you say to your teammates who are trying to block out the noise with you, especially the guys that are here for the first time?
LEBRON JAMES: I really don't hear the noise. I couldn't really care less. It really doesn't matter to me. I'm just here to play ball and compete for a championship. The narrative and people writing articles and things like that, I don't care. Those things doesn't bother me.

So it's hard for me to even tell my teammates, hey, don't listen to it, because I don't even get involved in it. I stopped caring a long time ago, so it doesn't even bother me at all.

Q. Most of the guys on the team say that you control the music in the locker room before the game. Is the playlist going to change now that you're down 0-1?
LEBRON JAMES: No. It's whatever I'm feeling.

Q. (Indiscernible) rigorous work ethic. As you get older, do you think you have to (indiscernible)? Or is that something you'll continue to do?
LEBRON JAMES: That's a great question. I don't know. My mental motor is still going, and my physical motor is trying to keep up with it. It's like that's all I know. It's like anybody that wakes up and the first thing they do is go get some coffee. They can't do anything without drinking coffee. Or the first thing they do is read the newspaper. You know it's just who I am. The first thing I do when I wake up is I go to the gym. No matter if I'm at home or on the road, it's just part of my DNA. I don't know if it will slow down. Obviously I know I won't be able to play this game forever, but I do know I'll be able to work out for quite a while. I think it's just a lifestyle for me.

Q. What defensive adjustments does the team need to make? Is it simply attitude? Or aggression?
LEBRON JAMES: It's not that simple. You need to be more aggressive, you need to have a better attitude -- if it were that easy, we would all do it. It's not that simple, especially when you're going against such a well-oiled machine in Golden State. So we will make adjustments and they will too. That's what good teams do, and we look forward to see what happens tomorrow.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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