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June 4, 2005

Shaquille O'Neal


Q. Can you talk about the difficulty of getting the ball to you early on and how that snowballed into Detroit's lead.

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL: No, I just think we had trouble taking care of the ball. You know, we were right there in the first quarter, but the second quarter we just had too many turnovers. I think we had 19 turnovers and just didn't take care of the ball. They got a lot of easy baskets. They just played looser. We've got to take care of the ball and do what we're supposed to do and tonight we didn't do that.

Q. Do you feel like you need Dwyane in Game 7 or do you tell him, if he's hurt, don't go out there?

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL: Whoever is on the court, everyone has to step up and do what they are supposed to do. I've just got to do a better job of getting the guys ready. You know, we've just got to go out there and do what we're supposed to do and just keep playing tonight. We made way too many mistakes, way too many.

Q. What more can you do to help get the guys ready?

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL: We've just got to talk to them, keep their spirits up and we've just got to -- it's simple, but we as individuals, if we don't do what we're supposed to do, we make it hard. We've just got to play our game and handle their pressure and just take care of the basketball.

Q. In the fourth quarter, you and Eddie Jones went back in with a deficit over 20, what were you trying to accomplish those last few minutes on the court?

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL: We were just trying to make a run. We wanted to cut it to 15, cut it to ten and then, you know, maybe we'd have a chance to win. But even in the fourth quarter, we just made too many mistakes and they just came out and played looser.

Q. You've been in more playoff games than anyone in the league, what do you tell your team before a big Game 7?

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL: I tell them they do what they are supposed to do on the home court, Game 7 is no room for mistakes and everyone has to come and do their part.

Q. What do you expect of Dwyane Wade?

SHAQUILLE O'NEAL: I'm confident that he'll be playing but if he's not, everyone has to step up in Game 7, including me.

End of FastScripts...

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