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May 31, 2005

Damon Jones

Alonzo Mourning


Q. Did the early foul trouble play a big role in Detroit's momentum in the first half?

ALONZO MOURNING: Yeah, I think the early foul trouble did play a big role. I do think the early foul trouble affected our play overall, our approach to the game, and when you are in foul trouble and you see that the referees are calling the game close like that, you tend to be a little bit more passive defensively. Detroit was more of the aggressor, and when they started calling the game the way they called it, I admit, to tell you the truth, I was a little bit more passionate defensively because I didn't want to pick up another foul because I was just afraid to touch somebody from that standpoint because of the way they were calling it. I mean, I think that did set the tone early, the fouls, the way they were called in the game set the tone of the game, and also set the tone of how we played defensively. But that's no excuse at all. I don't think there's any excuse. We still had an opportunity to get it done and we just didn't get it done.

Q. You guys obviously were in foul trouble, but where was this game lost?

ALONZO MOURNING: Defensively. You know, I don't know what they shot from the field but I'm sure they shot a pretty high percentage because they were getting layups. Our goal is to try to keep them under 40 percent. They shot high 40s, which is -- I think that might have been the best for the whole series for them so far, it might be the high shooting percentage for the whole series. That's where it got us, it really did, and I think our lack of aggressiveness defensively kind of fueled their play even more, and I attribute -- I attribute some of our lack of aggressive defensive play because of the way the game was called.

Q. You didn't come out with the focused energy that you needed, is it maybe that you guys are happy to get a split here?

DAMON JONES: No, that wasn't the case. Before the game started we were very intense. It just didn't happen. Just didn't transfer. Like you said, we did get a split here, it's 2-2 and we're going back home.

Q. Looked like Dwyane Wade got frustrated out there, he also had some problems with the fouls. What were they doing differently?

DAMON JONES: They just made a concerted effort to try to take the basketball out of his hands. I don't think he got frustrated. You know, when you're going to the basket very aggressive, you know, the whistle is not going your way, you may react once or twice, but I think he kept his poise and he came back and we still had a great game.

Q. What do they have to do to get you the open shots?

DAMON JONES: You know, it's not good giving me more open looks. It's about our team just playing better basketball. I only scored eight points the last game and we still won. It's not about me, it's not about any one individual, it's about us as a team playing collectively, better than we did tonight.

Q. Was their offensive proficiency an issue of them playing the offense they wanted to play?

DAMON JONES: We didn't fight like we did in Game 3. We fought for maybe 32, 33 minutes and we had a lapse of 14, 15 minutes and against a good basketball them, you have to put a total 48-minute game together to be successful, and we didn't do that tonight.

End of FastScripts...

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