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June 6, 2018

Kevin Love

Cleveland, Ohio: Game Three

Warriors - 110, Cavaliers - 102

Q. Kevin, you guys have been resilient all year long, and no one has asked any of the other participants in press conferences about this, but you guys are now in an 0-3 hole. What is the mindset of your team right now going into Game 4?
KEVIN LOVE: I think particularly in Games 1 and 3 we really gave ourselves a chance to win. We've been in this position before and not came out victorious. But like last year in Game 3, it seemed similar in that we were right in the game. I know last year we actually had the lead, but we were right in the game and K.D. hit that three on the left wing.

But we came out and I think -- who was telling me that we hit 24 threes last year in Game 4 and had a really great showing and didn't accept defeat. So that's something this team needs to do and continue to be resilient and come out Friday, shoot our shot, play our game and give ourselves a chance and move on to the next one. We'll see what we can do in Game 5. So Friday's going to be big for us.

Q. Kyle Korver has been such a big weapon for you guys all season long in these playoffs, his gravity, his movement, his spacing. How tough is it for you guys on offense to not have that weapon in this series thus far?
KEVIN LOVE: Yeah, I mean, as you've seen with Kyle here, he's been able to get off shots and open up the lane for not only LeBron but all of our guards when he's able to get three. But I think you saw it in last year's Finals as well, whether it's -- I know Iguodala just played tonight. But some of their other wing defenders, and particularly Klay, he's just so good at shutting that stuff down and forcing him into tough shots, not letting us get to that pin down action.

So it's been, I think, a tough series for Kyle. He had some open looks tonight. He had that one where he pump faked, he traveled, and he looked like that shot was going in after they had made the call. But, you know, we need him to just come out and be himself, and we need to find ways to get him shots.

Q. You had a double-double in the first half, only three field goal attempts in the second half. Was it what Golden State did to take you out, or did the offense just not come to you?
KEVIN LOVE: You know, I had a couple three-point shots, I think, in the second half and the other one I believe was a strip with Iguodala there at the end. But, yeah, I think it was more so we got stagnant. I think we came out, were ultra aggressive in that first half, myself included.

But we've -- third quarter has kind of been our Achilles heel all year. I've mentioned it this whole series. I feel like I've been sitting up here at the podium and answered the question the same way. Golden State is great in that third quarter. They fought back, they took the lead.

For us, we got stagnant again. We didn't move the ball, we didn't cut. We weren't getting to our usual spots that we like to get to starting the game. So I think that was mostly it.

Q. Games 1 and 3, two very winnable games. What is the difference with them up now 3-0 as opposed to maybe you guys being up 2-1?
KEVIN LOVE: I just think the margin of error against them is so little. I think that we fought very hard. Our schemes have been there. I know that K.D. had a -- had one of his games that will go on his highlight reel and one that was incredible even by his standards.

Then we forced two other juggernauts in Klay and Steph into some very tough shots, and both guys didn't have the greatest games. So we gave ourselves a chance, same thing in Game 1. They just -- like I said, that margin for error is so thin and so little against them that in some cases you almost have to be perfect.

Q. You played basketball long enough, you tip your hat to a guy making a great shot. But when he makes a carbon copy in a Game 3 of the NBA Finals to go up 3-0, like Kevin Durant did from the wing, what goes through your mind? And how much have the Golden State Warriors changed with K.D. versus the team you played in the 2016 Finals?
KEVIN LOVE: I think in 2016 they were definitely different. They had a different identity. I even saw -- came across Draymond's quote about Bogut. Bogut was great anchoring their defense. Having Draymond out there as well was very tough. So when you had Kevin Durant now to -- well, last year to a 73 and 9 team, he's obviously an MVP-level player. A guy that is All NBA, First Team All-NBA in this league, right there at the top of this league every single year. So just adds a whole different dynamic.

They have a number of guys that can bail their team out on any play, any game, any possession, and he was -- he's been that for them a number of times. Defenses try to plan for him, but when you're 6'11", 7 feet, and you're shooting a lazy pull-up on the left wing from 27 feet, that's pretty tough to guard.

It was pretty reminiscent of last year because it was almost the same time in the game, Game 3, and hit an unbelievable shot to put them up 6.

Q. Can you ever look at that spot on the floor again and not flash back?
KEVIN LOVE: Yeah, especially here at Quicken Loans. I was telling somebody after the game that -- Jason Lloyd, was telling him it's like did a déjà vu seeing him hit that shot again.

Sometimes even when you know it's coming and he's playing downhill and he's out there dancing with the ball, that pull-up is tough to stop because he can shoot right over you at that size.

Q. Following up on your margin of error. How much confidence does that give you guys going into Game 4 knowing how close Games 1 and 3 were? And how do you make sure you just kind of stay focused on that game and not look at it as we have to win four in a row?
KEVIN LOVE: Yeah, we know that we're capable. We just made some mistakes. We allowed a lot of cutters to get to the basket. There were times where we wanted to switch up, and they dove right to the basket, got open looks, or McGee got a couple shots at the basket. Bell got a couple shots at the basket. Iguodala, Livingston, those type of guys.

So when they make a big impact on top of a game like Kevin Durant has, that's tough to overcome. But we feel like we've been right there. We just have to come out on Friday and not give in.

Q. Without getting into the particulars of the trade or all the stuff that went into Kyrie asking out, have you ever thought during this series, just felt him gone or thought about just what it would be like to have him back in with you guys facing the Warriors in a series like this?
KEVIN LOVE: Yeah, I think it's only natural to think about, especially looking at Swish and Tristan and LeBron and myself and the guys that have come and gone from our 2016 team and what we were able to do to overcome a 3-1 deficit, and how we were able to win those games.

I think, yeah, that's human nature to think about that kind of a thing. But there's been a lot of overhaul on this roster. We've mentioned all year. It's felt like a number of seasons in one. But we've been resilient. We've played in a couple Game 7s, and now we just have to come out Friday and shoot our shot and, like I said, not give in.

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