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June 6, 2005

Larry Brown


Q. Your players seem loose, how would you describe your emotions right now going into Game 7?

COACH LARRY BROWN: Well, I'm glad my players are loose. I'm not loose. It's been a long day, but I really want them to have fun and enjoy the moment, and I don't think you can play well if you're worried about fouling, making mistakes or losing, so I hope they understand that, but for me, it's been a long day.

Q. You told us after Game 6 that you were feeling sentimental before Game 6, are you feeling similar emotions today, or is it different today than it was before Game 6?

COACH LARRY BROWN: You know, I think all year I've been, since February, been wondering what it would be like. But not so much today. Not as much as the last game. You know, I was home, my family around. No, I'm just excited about the opportunity, because these don't come along very much. I'm proud of the way my team's responded, and you know, I think this series has been great and it's been nice to be part of it, and I hope both teams play well and like my seventh grade coach always told me, if you want to win, you have to score more points than your opponents, so I'm going to tell our guys that.

Q. Along those same lines, can you reflect a couple of years ago, before you came to Detroit, and what these two years, what distance there has been in the two years, you won a championship, on the verge of trying to defend a championship and two years ago you were still looking for your first championship. Can you put that into some kind of perspective on nights like this?

COACH LARRY BROWN: Well, I came because, you know, I had a lot of respect for Joe (Dumars), and you had to be foolish not to recognize what he was trying to do with that franchise in terms of, you know, bringing in character guys, tough guys. He told me that he felt that group had a chance to be pretty darned good and he said, "I'll never be with a bunch of players that I would have more admiration for." So, we didn't talk so much about championships, but it's turned out way beyond my wildest dreams. You know, I was never involved with an NBA championship team, and to have it happen your first year and then have a chance to compete again for one, it's been wonderful. I don't think you could ask for anything more.

Q. Other than Shaq, their guys really haven't been in this situation, your team has so much experience in these kind of situations, although not Game 7s, but do you feel your experience gives you an edge going into this?

COACH LARRY BROWN: I hope so, but Shaq's played more than anybody in games like this, and he's been pretty darned successful. I don't think it hurts the fact that we've had so many big games. I hear it all the time, listening Magic and Barkley and Michael and how they have talked about how they had to learn through each experience, and then talking to Joe, losing in '86 and '87, you know, in key games, understanding what it's like. There's no substitute for experience, but from my perspective, it's about the players and usually the great ones are the ones that dictate what happens in a game like this. You know, our last game, I thought we were really kind of tight in Game 6, you know, everybody was shooting the ball poorly except for Rip, and that really I thought the first half he had really calmed us down and I think you're going to look around tonight and somebody's going to have to have that effect on this team.

End of FastScripts...

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