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June 15, 2006

Dirk Nowitzki


Q. Can you just talk about how dramatically this series has changed from midway to the fourth quarter last game to now?
DIRK NOWITZKI: Well, you know, you see when a team gets that confidence what they can do. I thought we had Game 3 under control, and then the last couple minutes we let it slip away. And next thing you know, we had a series.
You know, they played with a lot of confidence today, they made shots. They moved the ball well. Dwyane was great again. Shaq was a beast down there. So they had really everything going. Their role players made shots. They played a great all-around game, and we couldn't really get much going. A lot of shots were already down, came back out. And the bottom line is, if you shoot 31 percent from the floor, you're not going to win.

Q. You guys were out-rebounded by 17 on the defensive boards, 16 was the advantage on the points in the paint; why does there seem to be an aggressiveness problem here?
DIRK NOWITZKI: Well, if you shoot 31 percent from the floor, there are a lot more rebounds they can get on the defensive end. So I don't think the rebounding was that big of a key today. They did pound us on the glass pretty good in Game 3 when they had a lot of second-chance points.
But today, I don't think the boards were a big deal. You know, because like I said, when you shoot 31 percent, there are a lot of breaks coming off that they can get.

Q. How would you describe the type of defense they played on you tonight?
DIRK NOWITZKI: Well, they have been doing it all series. They do a good job, you know, getting into me and making me put the ball on the floor. I had some good looks, though, from especially early on in the paint. Missed the put-back layup. So I'm not really worried about my offensive game.
So just got to make shots.

Q. After a game like that, it seemed quite physical, you were on the ground a little bit; what's your body feel like after that sort of game?
DIRK NOWITZKI: Same as a regular game.

Q. What is your take about the seven points that your team scored in the fourth quarter?
DIRK NOWITZKI: Well, you know, down the stretch, when you're down 20 with a couple minutes left, obviously you're desperate and you take threes that are not really there.
So you know, obviously you've got to go out of your way a little bit to make some stuff happen when you're down that big. So, I mean, we just have to make shots. That's the bottom line.

Q. What's the status of your ankle, and could you describe what happened on that particular play when you turned it?
DIRK NOWITZKI: I just came down on the foot, like it happens a lot in our sport, and it's no big deal.

Q. You did a great job in the first two games against Dwyane Wade, and you were unable to do the same here in Miami. Does this have to change for you guys to step up?
DIRK NOWITZKI: Yeah, obviously we can't give him 40 every game. He's been really aggressive. Tonight, he looked really comfortable with his outside shot. He made a couple threes early. He made a couple tough pull-ups I thought.
He's been playing great. Obviously he adjusted to whatever we did in Game 1 and Game 2, we all know they are a great home team. They only lost, whatever, one home game all playoffs long. So we knew that they are going to play a lot better than they did on the road. But, you know, we've got to find a way to slow them down a little bit. You know, get into them more and still try to keep them out of the paint.

End of FastScripts...

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