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March 14, 2021

Will Wade

Nashville, Tennessee, USA

LSU Tigers

Postgame Press Conference

Alabama 80, LSU 79

THE MODERATOR: Ready when you are, coach.

WILL WADE: Very, very proud of our guys. We played really well all three games this weekend. We played extremely hard. We obviously came up a play or two short today. But we played extremely hard all weekend. Give credit to Alabama, they're a great team.

I thought our guys gave it everything they had. We've got to get back and recover and get ready for the big show with the NCAA tournament. But very, very proud to coach these guys, be a part of this program. I thought we left it all out there on the court. Just a little bit short there at the end.


Q. What do you think allowed you to be more competitive today compared to the first two games? What do you think going forward you learned from this game you still need to work on for the NCAA tournament?

WILL WADE: I just think we played with more edge, more fight, we were tougher. We just made big play after big play, which is what you have to do.

Certainly, I've made no bones about it, the rebounding. We gave up, I think Juwan Gary had seven offensive rebounds himself. Seven or eight offensive rebounds. The extra chances they got from the glass just did us in. That's what's going to be very, very tough for us in the NCAA tournament, is we've got to rebound. We've got to be able to finish plays.

Q. What was the difference in this game? What was the difference in your team's play today? The final play, what were the options there?

WILL WADE: Well, we weren't trying to catch it that far out on the final play. We were trying to catch it on the elbow. We had a hammer action to Cam, a little pin-and-curl action for Smart with a pop for Days. It was really an Iso for Watford from there.

We kind of got off-pace by throwing it too far out. We couldn't end it up any better with the short three and two great looks.

Like I said, we were more solid defensively. We executed better on offense. This is the first time we've played them we've been able to move the ball and score a little bit against them. Their defense is elite. Everybody talks about their offense, but their defense is what's elite.

I thought we were able to execute better and make some shots against them.

Q. Talk about Trendon's play today and also Aundre.

WILL WADE: Dre was great for us. He got us going there in the second half, was driving, was aggressive. He played really, really well for us. I was very, very proud of him.

Wat was tremendous. We played through him a lot, played through him in the post. He did a great job on the mismatches, being able to finish down there.

Q. Javonte, 21 points, seven boards, five assists. Talk about how he kind of ran everything on offense and defense.

WILL WADE: He was tremendous. I mean, he played basically every minute yesterday, close to every minute today. He's just a warrior. The threes he hit off the bounce, some of the big shots he hit, were just incredible.

He's a tremendous, tremendous player. He stepped up in a big game for us. Proud of him. Proud he's our point guard.

Q. What was your understanding of what happened before the game with the scuffle with the players?

WILL WADE: I wasn't out there. I didn't see it. I think a couple of the coaches got into it, a couple of players got into it after that. I haven't seen anything of the video of it yet.

Coach Oats and I talked about it. We just wanted to make sure we got both our teams to the NCAA tournament and everybody gets there with no suspensions. We accomplished that goal throughout the game.

Q. What are your plans in terms of accommodations for the NCAA tournament? Are you going to stay in Nashville until Indianapolis?

WILL WADE: We're going to go watch the selection show tonight as a team, grab some dinner, get up early in the morning and drive to Indianapolis.

Q. Your players obviously were disappointed with the loss. Trendon said that you still made a big statement to everybody that you can be a force in the NCAA tournament. What is the biggest key in the next several days to replicate this kind of effort whenever you play?

WILL WADE: First off, we've got to rest and recover. A lot of it's based on matchup. There's a lot of different factors.

I thought our defensive effort and intensity was much better this weekend. We've got to clean up the rebounding. At the end of the day we've got to get the rebounding cleared up.

Q. What is the message as you move forward now that you're getting ready to take this next step? What do you think you accomplished with the three solid games you did play?

WILL WADE: I think this is the team, quite frankly, I expected to have most of the season. We haven't necessarily played that way all year. We've been hot and cold or hit or miss. We finally started playing closer to our potential as a team and as a group in this game, this weekend.

I guess better late than never, but we have to carry it over to the NCAA tournament.


FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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