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July 20, 2021

DeAndre Ayton

Phoenix Suns

Game 6: Postgame

Milwaukee Bucks - 105, Phoenix Suns - 98

Q. How tough is this? You guys got to a place that probably very few people saw you guys getting to and then to get here and be up 2-0 and not be able to close this out, what's the feeling, the emotions right now?

DEANDRE AYTON: The team emotion? Everybody's down. But individually this is just the beginning. As a young player like me and some of the guys on my team, we know what it takes now and that's all I'm going off of, to be honest. I mean, nobody really expected us to even, you know, be here. I know people talk about injuries of other teams and stuff like that, but at the end of the day we playing ball and I'm just really happy how the guys had a wonderful season playing together to get us where we are today. But at the same time we feel it, it leaves a little bad taste in your mouth, but at the end of the day this is just the beginning, man. This is my third year and I'm already feeling it, you know?

Q. Just the impact that Chris had on you guys this year, what did it mean, what did it mean for this team for him to be here and to make this kind of run?

DEANDRE AYTON: He brought us all the way up here, you know? We know the type of detail we have to really emphasize to have consistency, to play at the level like this and the type of competitor he is, it was contagious. Knowing your opponent, knowing what the team likes, knowing what teams throw at you, things like that, CP added to everybody's arsenal.

Q. What did you, going back to Chris, what did you learn from him and I know it's early, but do you start recruiting him back now?

DEANDRE AYTON: I mean, hopefully. At the same time, you know, C, man, he taught everybody a lot. But mainly just coming to play, coming to compete and just approaching the game the right way with consistency, approaching it in a way where there ain't no mishaps. Almost try to be perfect.

Q. Devin was saying like expectations now, championship basketball, no less. How much do you anticipate that helping you through some of the lows of seasons that can produce, now that you know what it takes to get here and what Devin was saying, like to get past that?

DEANDRE AYTON: I think that was the first thing I told Book, once we got in the locker room after we got off the floor. You know, I walked over to him and said, you know, this is just the beginning. Now we know what we need to do and no less. We're going to keep each other accountable for the rest of our careers together and so does Mikal and Jae Crowder, all the other guys on the team as well.

Q. When you say, we now know what it takes, what does it take to kind of take that next step and to get over the hump?

DEANDRE AYTON: Basically everybody laying it all on the line. I tip my hat off to Milwaukee, because everybody that checked in, even if they didn't check in, they wanted to die on that court. And that's what I felt. That's what it takes. Everybody got to give it their all when it comes to this, especially when it's last game.

Q. When you're saying this is just the beginning, where do you think you made your biggest leaps this season and how do you build off that?

DEANDRE AYTON: My consistency on defense. I think this series I got caught up in some foul trouble, but throughout the whole playoffs and Finals I think I stepped up on my defense where whatever the teams throwing at us with their offense I can adjust. Whether it's smalls or bigs or bigs that can pop or put it on the ground as well, just making sure I'm on the floor long periods of time, especially when teams go small.

Q. Not even for the challenge for you individually, but as a team sometimes you just got to tip your hat to the opposition. Giannis Antetokounmpo had a wonderful series. What can you say about what it was like to face him with a title on the line?

DEANDRE AYTON: I mean, it was fun. Just like any other matchup that I faced. I think I seen -- this is the most time I've ever seen Giannis, but, yeah, man, it was fun. I love competing, I love the challenges, man, but I just wish I could win. But at the same time it was fun, I learned a lot. Just with consistency when it comes to this thing called competing, you can't really have any mishaps at this high level.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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