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May 25, 2005

Damon Jones


Q. You came out there, hit a few key 3s. Talk about getting in your rhythm. We know D. Wade got in his, but you kind of got in yours, too.

DAMON JONES: I just wanted to come out and be aggressive tonight and give Shaq and D. Wade some help. You know, I was feeling good early. I got the two fouls and I was kind of frustrated that I had to sit down early in the first quarter, but I took the initiative to come out in the second quarter and just be aggressive. I got a few open looks and was able to make them. I got to the free throw line and my night went well from there.

Q. You watch Dwyane every day but when you see a fourth quarter like he had, taking charges, blocking shots, amazing left-handed hooks. What are you saying to him as you're going back to the bench?

DAMON JONES: Man, keep it going (laughter). This guy has done it all year long. He was down on himself about his Game 1 performance, but we told him, "hey, all good players have bad games." I think he came out very aggressive on both ends of the floor tonight. We have to give the credit to Stan. He made some just adjustments in that we ran some things to open the floor up. We had opportunities to get to the basket without the Wallace boys being there.

Q. How motivated was he? Eddie said in the locker room said all the media said the Pistons have him figured out. How motivated did you see Dwyane tonight?

DAMON JONES: He was very motivated. He came to me at the beginning of the game and said, "just be in your spot because I'm going to attack the basket very hard, and if those guys come I'm going to be kicking. If not, then I'm going to be aggressive at going to the basket." I knew when he said that that he's going to be real aggressive.

Q. Take us back on the play, on the alley-oop that gave you guys the lead late in the game, the alley-oop that you hit from half court.

DAMON JONES: Well, we got a stop on the defensive end and we came down and transitioned. We were trying to get Dwyane the ball on the wing. We have a hand signal when a guy is overplaying him, and he looked to the rim and kind of gave me that look, so I tried to put the ball anywhere near the rim. He made a great athletic play and was able to finish.

Q. This game got close at the end. You almost went down 0-2. How big is it for you mentally to have won one?

DAMON JONES: It's very big. No one wants to lose two games on their home floor. I think the crowd was great down the stretch for us tonight. They gave us a lot of energy. We made plays, unlike Game 1. I think our morale is good now. We know that, as we knew coming into the series, that we could beat this team. But it's going to be a dogfight. We don't expect any easy games. But we're just going to go out prepared and hopefully go into Game 3 with a lot of energy like we did tonight.

End of FastScripts...

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