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May 27, 2022

P.J. Tucker

Miami Heat

Game 6: Postgame

Heat 111, Celtics 103

Q. P.J., this morning when others may have counted you out, you had that confidence. What is it about this team that when guys are even hobbling, you included, you can come into a Game 6 on the other team's court, still find a way?

P.J. TUCKER: It's just of the confidence of guys in our locker room. We've had crazy situations all year. Kyle being out. A bunch of us having injuries. It doesn't matter. Once we go down through our personnel, what we want to do, make our adjustments, get locked in for the game.

It's one of those situations, all you guys, everybody picked them, even though we're No. 1. We have nothing to lose. We play like that, moving the ball, talking on defense, making adjustments as the game goes.

We've had guys step up all year. Just that confidence in each other all year. So in a situation as this, it's easy to just fall back and play.

Q. How much of what Draymond said last night motivated your group tonight?

P.J. TUCKER: It's funny. We laughed. I thought it was funny because he knows better than anybody we still got to play the game. Got to play. There's no guarantees of anybody winning in this league on a night-in and night-out basis.

These games have been crazy. They've been unpredictable all series, being at each other's homes. We're both great home teams. It's just been crazy.

It's kind of weird to be a player and pick another team. I don't know.

Q. Coach Spo said he couldn't even talk to any of the other guys who had injuries about their injuries heading into this one. You guys aren't talking to each other about the injuries. Was there any unspoken rallying for you guys heading into this one?

P.J. TUCKER: Whoever is playing is playing. Whoever isn't isn't. I's not even one of those things where we are talking about it. Everybody get their treatment, do what they got to do to be as healthy as possible.

This time of year, there's nobody 100% healthy, both sides. I'm sure they got a bunch of guys, too, just trying to figure it out and give what they can. Try to win. That's it.

You can't get these days back. It's living in the moment, trying to just do what you can.

Q. Bam, Max, a few other guys have never played in a Game 7 before. What will your advice to them be over the next two days?

P.J. TUCKER: Usual routine. Block out the noise as much as possible and get ready to play a regular game like you've been playing.

I feel like we didn't do anything different. Last year, that was a tough (Game) 6, 7 win for us (Milwaukee) against Brooklyn. Everybody did the same thing, kept the same routine, same mindset. But we came together as a team. That's what we're going to have to do. It's going to be tough.

But I think we're built for it. I think our guys are built to be locked in, get it done.

Q. I know Jimmy says it's whatever it takes to win a game. Did have you any conversation, anyone have any conversation, that his scoring was needed tonight? Are you able to appreciate what he's doing in the moment or during a timeout or is the game over before you can appreciate it?

P.J. TUCKER: No, you can appreciate Jimmy all the time. You just watch him play, how hard he plays both ends. But it's funny because before the game, me and Markieff were talking with Jimmy, Yo, we need 50. We need 50 tonight. He looked at us, didn't say a word. He just nodded his head, kept going. I was like, oh yeah, he's about to play, he's locked in.

It was good to see him get going like that after a couple days that everybody is talking that he's not doing this or that, to see him respond and really be aggressive. His aggression just opens everything up for everybody else.

Q. You've had a lot of good players on your fair share of good teams. Where does Jimmy fit, stack up?

P.J. TUCKER: He's right there with the best of them. It's funny, he doesn't get the credit. I think it's insane he doesn't make All-NBA. That is almost impossible to me.

But, I mean, these are games right here. I think, you know, where other players play well all year, got numbers, but in those big moments, close-out games, stepping up, being big, just like doing everything -- he's done that all year long. Just step up in big moments and make plays, whether it's scoring, defensively, rebounding. Whatever, he's done it.

He's one of the best, for sure.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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