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June 1, 2011

LeBron James

MIAMI, FLORIDA: Practice Day

Q. LeBron, you guys are now 6-0 I think when trailing at halftime in these playoffs. You've shown a great knack to come back and win games. Is there a concern of you getting awfully comfortable that, oh, when the fourth quarter comes we'll come back anyway? Is that something you like not have to do?
LeBRON JAMES: It's not like we have big deficits at halftime. I seen the stats last night, down two points to Chicago, three points here, two points to Boston, one point to Boston. It's not like it's a huge deficit that we're trying to come back from 12 or 14 points down. Usually it's just good basketball at this point in time. We happened to be down.
We've played I think -- if I'm doing my math right, we've played 16 games. So we have had ten other games we wasn't trailing. We just got to continue to play our game and not worry about if we're trailing or not. We don't want to trail. We don't want to trail at all throughout the whole game, if it's possible. But we just got to maintain our focus.

Q. LeBron, after the Chicago game, you said that you would not failure team again. What has been the difference late in games and why have you guys, not just you but as a team, been able to close out these games?
LeBRON JAMES: Like I said, it comes from failure throughout the season. Having games where we felt like we could or should have won games late in games and we just didn't execute. I said last night I was used to closing out games in the last seven years. CB was used to closing out games and D-Wade was used to closing out games. One thing was figuring out how to do it together. We were used to doing it individually early on in the season. Me making a play or CB making a play or D-Wade making a play going back to our last few years. Once we figured out how we were going to do it together for the better of the team, we started to close games out, figure things out, figure out certain sets that would work for us in late-game situations and go from there.

Q. LeBron, every time you guys have been up in this series, Spo has pretty much stayed with the script, we move on, it's one game. He says all those things. What have you guys learned throughout the playoff run about how important it is to move on that quickly?
LeBRON JAMES: That's what it's about. We understand that Game 1 is over. We played well, but there were some things we could have done better. We now move our focus to Game 2 and approach that game like it's our last as well. We continue to come into our home court and try to protect home court. We understand Dallas if comes in here and does a great job of stealing one of our games, then they feel -- they forget about Game 1 as well. So we have to come in with the same mindset.

Q. What makes Pat Riley cool?

Q. What makes him cool, Pat Riley?
LeBRON JAMES: What do you mean "cool"?

Q. I was wondering in your opinion, what makes him cool? Do you think he's cool?
LeBRON JAMES: He cool. There you go.

Q. Can you describe that moment in Cleveland when he came up and pitched you up there. What was that like?
LeBRON JAMES: It was great. I had an unbelievable meeting with not only Pat but Micky and Nick Arison and Coach Spo and Zo came. It was a great meeting. Basically gave me the blueprint about how this organization is ran, both on the court and off the court. The great thing I got out of that is about how important family is. I'm a big believer in that. Always have been throughout my life. I appreciate that, and also the product they can put on the floor as well.
With D-Wade and also at the time they were talking about they could get CB as well and another free agent. I thought it was the right move.

Q. Did it get you fired up?
LeBRON JAMES: No, not at that point. I definitely seen something at that point when we were all talking about the players in this organization, I definitely have something to look forward to.

Q. LeBron, your three-point shooting obviously has just improved throughout the playoffs. How important is that shot at the end of Game 4 in regulation in Boston? It seemed the next game you hit five and since then you've been on a tear. How critical was that shot to your confidence, if it was at all?
LeBRON JAMES: I think it was just a big shot, period. It was a close game at that point in The Garden. To be able to make that shot and tie the game up, it was a huge shot. It definitely was a shot that we needed at the time, and I was able to knock it down. And I just kind of just took that momentum from that game, and moved on to Game 5.
Now I'm here, made a big shot in Game 2 in Chicago and a few key shots in Game 5 also in Chicago from behind the arc. And then last night I was able to make a few, also.
It's not my game, though. I'm not a three-point shooter. I'm an attack guy. If a defense is going to allow me to sit and measure up a three-pointer, I'm going to take it. I have that much confidence in my shooting ability. I'm an attack-first guy. That's what I'm best at. I don't care how many threes I make, I understand that my game is in the paint.

Q. Two questions: First of all, did Riles dump his championship rings on table when you met?

Q. How many?
LeBRON JAMES: It was a bunch of them. I don't know.

Q. The other one is that you were just saying, you were outside most of Game 1. I think you got three makes in the lane. Was that because they were sitting there watching you or a lot of help or were you just reading the situation?
LeBRON JAMES: I guess reading the situation. Taking what the defense gives me. They played a lot of zone. So in the zone it is to keep your perimeter attackers out on the perimeter. I was able to make a couple just swing, swing situations where the defender ran at D-Wade or ran at Mike Bibby and I was sitting in the corner by myself and I was able to hit a couple. I made a couple off the dribble. One at the end of the third and one right before the end of the third. I think like a minute on the clock I was able to pull up for a three.
Just try to take what the defense gives me, and not force anything against this defense. They play so many styles, from man to zone to matchup and things like that. You have to kind of be patient and go with it.

Q. Several of the Mavericks players last night were talking about they weren't really able to get into their flow of offense. They started running a lot more sets. How much of that was because they weren't rebounding well? How much is what you were doing with your perimeter defense? And just in general, what you want to do with Jason Kidd to keep him from getting into that flow of offense?
LeBRON JAMES: Just play our defense. This is the most challenging offense we've played in this postseason, because of the firepower that they have offensively. They have multiple guys that can shoot, multiple guys that can put the ball on the floor and create for others. They have guys in the paint that also can create in Shawn Marion and Tyson Chandler, who gets into the paint, and makes some things happen around the rim. It's a challenge for all of us. We come out with a game plan, Coach Spo and the coaching staff gives us a game plan and we go from there. Kind of just use our instincts, our athleticism and our communication defensively to try to read and react.

Q. You mentioned you, Chris and Dwyane figuring out how to close games. What's allowed you specifically to do so much of it in the final five minutes in the final moments of the game?
LeBRON JAMES: Just seizing the moment. Understanding this is a great opportunity for not only myself but for our team to seize the moment and try to take full advantage of it. Am I going to make every shot or close every game out from now on? I hope so. I don't know. But I do put myself in the position, I do have the confidence that if I have the ball in my hands or if I get the ball in my hands that I can make a play, not only for myself but for my teammates to help us win that game.
We're a really good team down the stretch now. It has a lot to do with our team as far as trust, it has a lot to do with myself and D-Wade and just the position Coach has put us in in late games to have us have an ability to come down the stretch and make shots for our team.
I guess it's a confidence of closing games out, but it's also the trust you have for your teammates. When they look at you and see you need to close a game out. No matter if you fail, they look for you again to do it again.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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