May 26, 2005
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS: Practice Day
Q. How are you doing?
JOE JOHNSON: All right. I sweat a lot in it (the mask). I will get used to it.
Q. Is this the mask, is this the one that you will be wearing for the weekend?
JOE JOHNSON: I have got two. This is one of them.
Q. What is the difference between this one?
JOE JOHNSON: We just got two in case anything happens.
Q. Tony Parker is the guy you will be on. Talk a little bit about defending him, that challenge?
JOE JOHNSON: I am kind of going to make it tough for him, you know, getting in the lane, shooting those floaters, and by me guarding him, putting a bigger person on him, maybe he won't get as many easy shots.
Q. I know that you have defended Manu Ginobili previously, have you ever gone head-to-head with Tony Parker before?
JOE JOHNSON: Yeah, as a matter of fact, the game -- I think it was last game here -- I am not for sure, but not the last game here but the regular season game. It was a challenge, but I am up for it.
Q. Talk about playing?
JOE JOHNSON: It's fun. This is what I live for and I am enjoying myself playing basketball. Finally getting a chance getting out there. It is going to be fun.
Q. Any question that you won't be out there on Saturday?
JOE JOHNSON: From right now, no, it's not a question. I think pretty much put in the slot, but no, I don't want to speak too soon, but I still got a doctor's appointment before we get out of here, so we -- I am going to go up there, and whatever the doctor says.
Q. Any hesitation on your part because of the injury?
JOE JOHNSON: No, not at all. I wanted to get out sooner, but I couldn't. I got the mask. I was ready to get out here and play.
Q. Talk about the mask?
JOE JOHNSON: I think it will be a challenge, but I don't think it is going to bother me. Like I said, it makes me sweat, the sweat dripping down my face. But other than that, I think I will be all right.
Q. What about the challenge of Parker?
JOE JOHNSON: Just put a bigger person on him. I am going to try to stay in front of him, make it as difficult as possible for him.
Q. Is your vision fine?
JOE JOHNSON: My vision is great. I don't have any problems other than I got this -- the redness still in my eye. But it doesn't bother me at all.
Q. Can you see the red?
JOE JOHNSON: If I look in the mirror, yes.
Q. But in your vision?
JOE JOHNSON: No, I can't see it at all. It's healing up well.
Q. How tough was it, you are not used to sitting out?
JOE JOHNSON: Very tough. It was my first time. I am more nervous sitting over there just watching because I can't do anything than when I am out there. So like I said, it's great to finally get back out on the court again.
Q. Any sports psychologist involved in terms of keeping your mental game sharp?
JOE JOHNSON: No, my mental game is right here. I am not worried about anybody hitting me in my face, anything like that. I am just goiing to go out there and play. I don't need no sports psychologist or whatever, I don't need none of that.
End of FastScripts...