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May 17, 2010

Dwight Howard


Q. What was the mood like today during practice?
DWIGHT HOWARD: It was good. We were focused, ready to go. We had a pretty good film session and practice. We're looking forward to tomorrow.

Q. Stan was kind of talking to you a little bit. Was he kind of giving you a few post moves and --
DWIGHT HOWARD: No, we were talking about some things that he saw, some things that I saw. And Stan said he never played in the post. He's just telling me what he saw.

Q. How much do you feel differently about tomorrow night?
DWIGHT HOWARD: I just think we have to play with more energy. They came out with a lot of energy. They played harder than us. I think that was the main reason why they won.

Q. How are you going to do that -- (Indiscernible)?
DWIGHT HOWARD: I don't know. Can't allow it to happen again. They just came out and played with more energy than us. They acted like they wanted to win that game, and they did.

Q. What kind of things do you do differently in your day when you know you want to come out with more energy? How do you do that?
DWIGHT HOWARD: There's nothing you can do today that obviously gets you ready to play tomorrow besides --

Q. How do you come out -- you guys say you have to come out with more energy. How does that work? How do you do it?
DWIGHT HOWARD: Come out and play harder. Have you ever played in any sports?

Q. Yes.
DWIGHT HOWARD: It's all about how you approach the game. You come out and play hard.

Q. You hadn't lost in six weeks, didn't play in six days and were coming off a dominating sweep. Was going against the Celtics kind of a shock to the system; a big step up from what you were doing?
DWIGHT HOWARD: It wasn't a shock. Like I said, they just played harder than us. That's why they won the game. They ran the floor, they got more fast-break points than us. And we're usually the team that's out running getting easy baskets. They were doing it. It's about effort. These types of games, the closer you get to the finals, it's more about effort than anything.

Q. Everyone always talks about playing the whole 48 minutes. Was the first 12 minutes of the last game the reason for the loss?
DWIGHT HOWARD: I think the turnovers were the big reason why we lost the game. They capitalized on us turning the ball over.

Q. Dwight, Vince said yesterday that they needed to support you more in terms of maybe knocking down more shots. How much do you need that perimeter threat?
DWIGHT HOWARD: I just think we have to play the game the right way. Move the ball. In the first half -- the first ten minutes or so some stat Coach had, we only passed the ball six times in like ten or 12 minutes. Only six passes. And for the whole first half we had like seven or eight passes. We didn't move the ball a lot.
From that standpoint, we have to do a better job of moving the ball and making their defense work. They have a great half court team. When they get set on defense, they are tough to score on.

Q. (Indiscernible) How do you fight through them --
DWIGHT HOWARD: It's not about fighting. What I tried to do last night was (Indiscernible) not about fighting, fighting, fighting. It's playing together. This series for us is how strong we can be mentally. They are going to fight us. They're going to do all that stuff. How strong can we be to, I guess, finish.

Q. There was a point where things were not going your way in the third quarter, I want to say. Vince said we need you.
DWIGHT HOWARD: He always says that. He knows how the game is played. He's not out there telling me just to stay focused. I think for the most part I can pretty much say that to him. I think his thing is no matter how bad we feel last night, you know, no matter what happens with the rest, whoever it may be, we have to stay together.
We still had a chance to win the game, even though we didn't play as well as we wanted to. His whole thing was just stay focused. Remember what we're trying to do.

Q. How good are they? And what is it that makes them such a tough challenge?
DWIGHT HOWARD: I mean, they're a good team. They have some shooters. They have Paul Pierce, who can do about anything he wants. Kevin Garnett is the same way. So, you know, we know what kind of team they have. We have to come out and play with more energy.

Q. Can you talk about Kendrick Perkins and how he has defended you since you guys have butted heads through the years. Has it changed at all?
DWIGHT HOWARD: It hasn't changed. He's doing the same thing. I think he's going to keep doing the same. I'm going to have the same outcome against him if I play his game. His game is to be physical, try to fight me. But for me I don't have to try to fight him to score. There's other ways around it.
The times I was successful were the times I didn't fight him for the post position, fight to score. I just made the game simple. That's what you have to do against a big body like Kendrick and Rasheed. You have to be patient. I think the times I rush and make the fouls -- until I learn to not do that on the court -- I know what I have to do, but until I bring it into play, I'm going to have the same success and failures that I have had in the past.

Q. Do you take maybe a boxing mentality into a wrestling match where you are sticking moves, speed, agility, land your punches and score your points?
DWIGHT HOWARD: I guess. I boxed before. I wouldn't say that. I would say just pick and choose when to post up, when to go to pick-and-rolls. Don't give them a steady diet of something. Make them work. All the things that I do well that I've done, I have to do it against them. Kendrick Perkins, everybody is saying he's always the guy on defense. Let me show people what I can do, instead of just playing -- that's what I try to do.

End of FastScripts

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