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May 31, 2006

Tayshaun Prince


Q. Tayshaun, tonight you were over 60 percent in your shooting, and McDyess was 5 for 5. The rest of the team was under 30 percent again. What can the team do to improve that shooting, and how badly hurt is Rasheed that he's having a tough time?
TAYSHAUN PRINCE: Rasheed is having a tough time with his ankle. On two or three separate occasions he kept tweaking it. But at the same time he's playing well. I mean, he's giving us energy and effort for the most part, and that's what we need. But as far as the first question, as far as the majority of the team shooting around 30 something percent, it didn't really matter tonight because the energy and the effort was there on both ends of the floor.
If you're not shooting the ball well and you're playing with a lot of energy and effort and you get defensive stops and things like that and you hold the other team to a low percentage even though they've been shooting the ball extremely well, it kind of helps out.
Like you said, McDyess had a magnificent game tonight, shooting 5 for 5 on his free throws, and just a game that we needed.
Q. Defense in the fourth quarter, I think you held them to about 13 points the whole quarter. Can you talk about that, and can you also talk about the play where Ben stuffed Shaq? Is that something that even the players on the team kind of say "wow" about?
TAYSHAUN PRINCE: The thing about it, it gets the crowd into the game when stuff like that happens. When you're at home, I think it gets the energy going and the adrenaline, and that's what happened. Dwyane hit a couple tough shots there at the start of the quarter, and after that we started playing some good solid defense.
But we played some good defense in the fourth quarter. We had some careless turnovers here and there, shot clock violation, but overall it was a good fourth quarter, and like I said, when you're not shooting the ball well, the energy was there, and that's what kind of helped us out.
Q. How far does this win go in repairing whatever was broke either mentally or system-wise?
TAYSHAUN PRINCE: The thing about it, hopefully this win and the way we played will give us some momentum going on the road. Obviously Miami is playing extremely well at home, so hopefully this win here will give us some momentum going into the next game. But going back to tonight's game, it was a situation where we faced elimination and we played hard and left it all out on the line. That's what we'll have to do in Miami.
Q. You've got guys who are a little bit hurt and struggling. Do you feel more responsibility to be the one who steps up?
TAYSHAUN PRINCE: Well, I've got responsibility if I'm having a good night. I've got to continue to try to carry them. But there's situations where Chauncey carries us, Rip carries us, guys carry us on our team. I was just in a good rhythm tonight. When you're in a good rhythm you try to help your team as much as possible. That's just the situation. That's basically it.
Q. Chauncey said after the game that he thinks all the pressure now is on Miami because they're going to want to finish it in 6 without having to come back here. Do you agree with that?
TAYSHAUN PRINCE: The pressure is on them and us because we don't want to go home after Game 6, so I think the pressure is both ways. Like I said before, they've been playing great at home. It's going to be a tough situation.
We know the atmosphere is going to be rowdy, but in a situation where you're on the road, everybody in that blue jersey is all we have to worry about. Hopefully we can go out there and have fun. Most important thing is just leave it all out on the line because we're facing elimination.
Q. All throughout the series you've been having very strong first quarters. What goes on in the first quarter that is giving you more shots and more opportunities?
TAYSHAUN PRINCE: Well, tonight I don't think I scored in the first five or six minutes. I believe we was trying to get the ball inside to Rasheed, make some plays, get Ben some pick-and-rolls and make some stuff happen. Then they got the penalty early, got to the foul line, made those two free throws, and there was a situation where there was some switches and I got open and made some shots, so after that I kind of got a rhythm going. That was the case in the game tonight, but overall in the first quarters I've been getting off to great starts just trying to attack the baskets, get some inside baskets first before I start trying to shoot some jump shots.

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