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May 21, 2011

LeBron James

Dwyane Wade

MIAMI, FLORIDA: Practice Day

LEBRON JAMES: It's tough to say about a curve. Like I said, pilates classes, yoga classes, I did a little swimming, auditoriums back home.

Q. So you were like with the old ladies -- where were these classes?
LEBRON JAMES: It was back home. I can't tell you exactly where it's at. It's a secret place. We hold a secret society over there. We don't tell too many people.

Q. The same with the swimming?
LEBRON JAMES: Yes, the same with the swimming.

Q. LeBron, your late-game shooting numbers have always been very good over your career. Among the best of the league from the percentage standpoint. How did the fact that you missed a few of those shots earlier this year, does that make it more gratifying what you've been doing the last three weeks, making those game shots?
LEBRON JAMES: I mean, I didn't want to miss those ones earlier in the season. Of course not. You want to come through for your teammates anytime you're in those situations. When you're put in those situations time after time after time, you're going to miss some.
Ultimately, if you have confidence in yourself, if your teammates continue to have confidence in you, you're going to come through for them. And you're going to come through for yourself.
Those shots result in a win, of course it's gratifying. I can't say it's not. I just have to keep it going.

Q. LeBron, how vital is it for just the overall success of everything, the fact that the entire -- all 15 are here? We see you guys after every practice real loose and vocal, Damp was jumping around, guys who are not necessarily getting minutes. How key is that?
LEBRON JAMES: We have a true professional team. Look at Dampier, the situation. He started a lot of games for us. E. House has played some big games for us, made big shots for us. And those guys are not particularly playing right now. But their spirit, they come in every day at practice and help us get better and play like it's a game situation.
When you have true professionals, it's not about the I, it's about the we. And they understand that. We respect that to the fullest, being in that situation.

Q. How much do you guys look forward to that at the end of practice every day?
DWYANE WADE: It's challenging. Like he said, it's camaraderie between guys. Me and Brian, we get a kick out of it. Them guys are quote, unquote, shooters, and we're shot-makers. We have competition. But most importantly, it's just us being part of the guys and everyone -- no point making it seem like we're above anyone, no matter who is playing. Everyone here is on the same level. Everyone helps us win. It's just being one of the guys.

Q. LeBron, with the days off, not being the regular season with back-to-backs and what not, is it easy to play the amount of minutes that you've been playing?
LEBRON JAMES: Man, if you had to play back-to-back in the postseason, no way I could play 45 minutes a game. It would never happen. With the time that you get off, it definitely helps the body to recover. But also at the same time, it's whatever it takes, honestly, in the postseason.
I feel like personally if I'm not out there hurting the team, I'm out there playing big minutes, I feel I should be on the floor. If I'm out there and dogging and not playing at a high level defensively and I'm not helping the team and I'm playing these big minutes, I should come out and sit on the bench.
Me just being in good shape and me continuing to -- when I'm on the court, just trying to help the team as best -- the best way possible and go from there.

Q. When you go home, do you make a concerted effort over the last couple of days to stay off your legs and not do anything? I know you got a workout here.
LEBRON JAMES: Yeah. We do a good job of mixing it. You don't want to stay off your legs too much. You don't want to become sluggish. We got out a little bit yesterday. Had lunch. Got into the city a little bit. At night you just try to get off your legs as much as possible. It's a fine line, because you don't want to get out of rhythm. We come in here and get work in during the day, and then we try to relax during the night.

Q. This being the Eastern Conference Finals, how much more physical do you expect and grinding do you expect this series to get?
DWYANE WADE: I expect it to be very physical, obviously. When you have a team like Chicago who is a physical team -- in a sense, they are a rugged team. Offensive rebounds, loose balls, things of that nature. And you know we're a team who is willing to get into the fight.
Two teams that want to win. You don't get to the Eastern Conference Finals, you don't have the season that we had, them being the first seed and us being the second seed, if you don't really want this.
After every game, like I said, you expect for your body to feel like you just went through a battle. That's what it feels like. That's what it's going to continue to feel like.

Q. How is this series exemplifying Eastern Conference basketball, as opposed to what's going on on the other side?
DWYANE WADE: Defense. Defense. Eastern Conference is known as -- when you think of Western Conference, you think of open show-time type of stuff. Eastern Conference you think of the Detroit Pistons, the Chicago Bulls. You think of the teams that we have had in the Eastern Conference that have won championships, it's been about their defensive tenacity.

Q. Do you ever wish you played in the West?
DWYANE WADE: I'm fine. I had my chance to play in the West. I didn't go nowhere. I like the East.

Q. LeBron, what do you think the outcome of the series will be? Is it going to be like against the Celtics in five games or is it going to be tougher?
LEBRON JAMES: I don't know. We're just worried about Game 3, which is tomorrow night. We come out with the same intensity that we did in Game 2, we give ourselves a good chance to win.

Q. LeBron, how often do you think about winning the title during the course of the day? Five, ten times? Is it a tangible thought?
LEBRON JAMES: It happens all day. It happens all the time. You dream about it, hosting that trophy up, the title, seeing the confetti rain. You have to have that vision. If you don't have that vision, I don't know exactly what you're being a part of this postseason for. I have that vision all the time. Even when I'm awake or I'm sleeping.

Q. Did you put Dwyane's ring on before?
LEBRON JAMES: No, that's his. I'm good.

Q. Dwyane, how can an emotional boost like the return of UD at home be received in a close game like this? How can it make a difference?
DWYANE WADE: The crowd is going to -- first of all, they're going to love him, UD for who he is, for coming back and what he did in the last game. I was coming in and driving and listening to the radio. It was UD Day after the game in Chicago.
The city of Miami loved that. He's a son of the city. And it's going to be big for him when he checks in the game to hear the ovation from the crowd. Obviously, that's going to give everyone a mental and physical push at that moment. But we have to sustain that.

Q. You guys have had a lot of success in the playoffs at home, and the Bulls also hang their hat on the fact that they haven't lost two games in a row as well. Something is going to have to give tomorrow. Either one of you can answer that.
LEBRON JAMES: If it takes home court, that's what it's about. They talk about they haven't lost two games in a row. So we're going to protect home court, and try to come out with a win. We'll see what happens. Something has to give.

Q. How overvalued can home court be when you have two good road teams?
DWYANE WADE: Obviously you have an advantage whenever you're home. But you have two teams that can both win on the road. And nothing is a given. You have to fight it out to the very end. No team is going to go away because of the noise in the arena. At the end of the day, it's basketball.
When you get to this point -- you have two teams that you see in the other conference as well. You see OKC go up to Dallas and win it on the road. Teams do that. You feel comfortable at home. You feel confident at home that you should win. It doesn't happen all the time, but you feel that way. You have two teams that can win on each other's floor.

Q. LeBron, for those of us who haven't been on the NBA floor, what's that physical fight like under the glass for rebounds?
LEBRON JAMES: I don't know. It's unexplainable. Do you have any tattoos? You ask me how my tattoo feels, you can't explain that either. You have to be under the needle. Under the boards, it's a grind out there. You have to be physically and mentally strong to want to be out there and come up with the rebound. There are times you're down there battling, and you still don't get the rebound. You have to be physical for one, and you have to be mentally strong as well.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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