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May 29, 2005

Larry Brown


Q. Could you please talk about the free throw disparity and what you saw in the fourth quarter.

COACH LARRY BROWN: We fouled. You know, at the end I think we had -- we started fouling trying to get back in. We might have started fouling a little too soon. You know, they made some huge plays. Eddie Jones, Rasual Butler, they just made plays at the end and we kind of lost our poise a little bit. With about five-minutes to go in the game, we just let things get in the way of playing basketball. You know, when you shoot 65 percent from the free throw line and you don't shoot great from the field, you can't let things get in your way. Even with a minute and 47 seconds to go, we were down eight with the ball, and four minutes prior to that you would have thought we were down 30.

Q. When Dwyane Wade left the game with 7:56 and five fouls, you guys were up five. When he came back you guys were down nine. Why do you feel you weren't able to capitalize during that period when he was out of the game?

COACH LARRY BROWN: They made plays. Rasual Butler hits, Eddie hits a big three, and I didn't know if our shot selection was great. We missed some free throws. But again, I thought we let a lot of things factor in and just lost our poise. I think as a result of that, we dug ourselves a hole and a chance to win it. You know, in Game 2, I thought our shot selection down the stretch got a little bit quick and we settled too much I think tonight in a lot of cases, we did that, as well.

Q. The defensive play early, did you think it was soft? They were just making shots over the top of you. Were you disappointed with your defense especially early?

COACH LARRY BROWN: I didn't think we defended great early, but I told the guys, you know, they're shooting 60 or close to it, and we were down two at halftime. You know, we were relatively out of foul trouble until the last two minutes, Rasheed and Ben picked up some really tough fouls late. But I didn't think we defended great. And then they got up -- I thought we defended a little better the second half. They got up 10, Lindsey came in and changed everything, and then again, we just let things get to us that shouldn't have had any effect on us at all.

Q. Considering the experience of your team and the way they normally play, are you surprised that you lost your poise or let those things get to you?

COACH LARRY BROWN: Yeah, yeah. I mean, we've worked too hard and been in too many situations, and we've always relied on each other as a team to get over the hump, and tonight, you know, there were so many things happening out there that I think shouldn't have had any effect on us at all. You've got to play through things. Everything is not always perfect. But again, Shaq was phenomenal, Dwyane's first half doesn't get much better than that and they had some guys come in and make huge plays. I think we could have done a lot of things a lot better regardless of what was going on out there.

Q. Wade had 40 last game, he got 36 this time. What do you try to do to change things to make it harder for him and why do you think he was able to counter? It looked like he hit a lot of jump shots tonight.

COACH LARRY BROWN: Well, he got, what, 21 at halftime, 7 for 9? Am I right? I didn't think we defended really great. He got anything he wanted.

I thought the second half we did a much better job on him. He got some free throws late, he got an offensive rebound, but I didn't think it was him in the second half; I just thought they just had a number of guys step up. That's what this is about, other people contributing and not necessarily having Shaq or Wade, but they played great. He's a pretty special player. I think that's -- Rip picked him up full court and I thought he did a good job in the second half, and Lindsey obviously came in and did as good a job as you could on him and got us back in the game.

Q. How critical was it that Antonio McDyess picked up that fifth foul? How big was that?

COACH LARRY BROWN: Well, we had Ben with five, Rasheed with five, Antonio with five. Antonio picked up fouls that I don't know if they had any effect on the game at all, but it hurt. Even with all the things, looking at bad foul trouble and stuff like that, we still let things dictate this game that shouldn't have happened. An experienced team that's won, that's relied on each other, that's fought through adversity shouldn't allow that to have an effect on your play because Elden came in and gave us a few minutes. We were able to shuffle people in and out. We got back in the game with foul trouble. They just made plays at the end and kept their poise, and I don't think we did.

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