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May 29, 2022

Ime Udoka

Boston Celtics

Game 7: Pregame

Q. Just the standard thing with Marcus and Robert, I assume they are going to start, and any limits on them minutes-wise tonight?


Q. And they will start?


Q. Given the turnover issues you've had, how do you respond to that after Game 6, and what do you emphasize to the team given the issues that they have had in that area?

IME UDOKA: We emphasize how it's affecting us, especially at start of games. Turnovers and rebounds have been a common theme in some of games that we have lost or got off to slow starts and so as always, understanding that the crowd is going to be there. Physicality going to be there. Taking one or two less dribbles and getting the ball moving, which we have had success against them doing that in the Milwaukee series and pretty much everybody else all year.

So, when we do it well, we are in good shape. When we don't, we struggle.

Q. Tyler Herro sounds like he's probably going to play. How does that affect things, if at all for you guys?

IME UDOKA: No different. No change.

Q. You've been pretty routine-oriented throughout these playoffs. What went into the call to not have shootaround today?

IME UDOKA: Fresh legs, energy, juice. The series is what it is. There's no surprises from either side, and we want energy. It was optional, but a lot of the guys going and get shots, anyways. Get out of the monotony of doing the same thing and keeping our legs and fresh energy for tonight.

Q. You know your team better than anyone else. Any sense of how your team feels coming into this one? Is it pretty how much how they felt going into every playoff game, the Game 7 versus Milwaukee? Anything different about your team coming in?

IME UDOKA: No, nothing that is said or sensed any different. Confident as usual. But understanding what works for us and what doesn't. So that's been the theme throughout the playoffs, throughout the season, and so it doesn't change because it's a Game 7.

We faced two elimination games in the last series and this one, like I said, after last game, we gave ourselves a chance to play two games for one, and more of the same.

Q. Robert has not started the second half now in two consecutive games and I remember after the first one, the explanation was he needed an extra stretch. But are you seeing something now that gives you some sort of advantage to not going with him to start the third quarter?

IME UDOKA: No, strictly a physical thing. He warms up well before game to get ready, and at times during the half, he wants to get a little more loose. Strictly physical. Nothing game plan-wise. We are comfortable going with either and if he needs a little bit more time, we give it to him.

Q. Do you make anything out of the last two-minute report that came out and the voluminous amount of video that was looked at and a couple of incorrect calls against Derrick white?

IME UDOKA: No, we felt those weren't fouls during the game. We weren't trying to foul, obviously, up three with a minute and change left. It happened in the Milwaukee series, and we put it behind us and did the same after this game.

Game 6 is over. It's time to face this one.

Q. Throughout the series, there's huge ebbs and flows with a lot of players being able to hit the shots that usually go in for them, a lot of the same coverages are seen. What is it about the level of energy and mental aggression you need to have to try to -- or how hard is it to sustain that, and your decision this morning, how did that play into wanting to make sure they could sustain that tonight?

IME UDOKA: It's not anything specific about shots. It's just we know what's on the line. Elimination game and possible last game of the season, or we continue to move on and have some time to rest.

So we want to be as full as we can. Guys are going to play heavier minutes, and some did last game, so strictly that.

With our guys, I think we try to wear on other teams and wear them down throughout the game, so those end of game shots are a little bit tougher. The looks aren't always there and they are rushed at times. With our guys, I feel they can play adequate minutes if we need to increase them like they have throughout the playoffs, they would still be fresh. That was just more geared toward longer minutes possibly and being fresh tonight.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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