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June 2, 2012

Shane Battier


Q.  Shane, the 58 points in the paint, the most you've given up all year, obviously along with a defensive collapse.  Can you just talk a little bit about having a chance to dissect it overnight?
SHANE BATTIER:  We haven't had a chance to watch film yet.  But obviously their penetration, their concerted efforts to get Garnett in the paint, was very damaging for us.
So we'll have to work‑‑ we'll talk a little harder and work earlier to limit those points.

Q.  How much does it help, Shane, that you have played in series prior to this against guys who had length advantages, like Tyson Chandler, the guys in Indiana?
SHANE BATTIER:  Well, we've been undersized on paper all season long.  And so we know we've had to work extra hard and extra smart to really limit paint points.  So it's nothing new for us.  We know we're undersized.  We have to work quicker, smarter, more together to limit those catches.

Q.  Is Kevin Garnett a different kind of challenge than maybe some of the others you have faced?
SHANE BATTIER:  Yes, his length is a little more different.   He's agile.  A guy like Hibbert, he was also big, but he was a lot slower than KG.  You can react a little quicker to him.  KG is pretty agile in his length.  It makes him a different challenge.

Q.  Dwyane made no free‑throws in this game after 12 in the last game.  LeBron 24, only five yesterday.  How do you explain that?
SHANE BATTIER:  That's the way it goes.  The law of averages.  It usually balances out.

Q.  Shane, do you think fans get crazier about a loss than you guys in the locker room?
SHANE BATTIER:  I think there's quite a bit of hyperbole especially in the playoffs.  When you win you have all the answers.  When you lose one, scrap everything, go back to the drawing board.  Nothing works.  That's the beauty of the NBA playoffs and hyperbole.

Q.  Shane, 'Spo mentioned effort being an issue and them getting all the loose balls.  Just kind of the effort stats.  Do you think that was a case of just a team that was down 2‑0 maybe a little bit more desperate in a game like that?
SHANE BATTIER:  It was a typical Game 3 effort by a team down 2‑0 in the hole.  Usually that third game in the opposing arena is a really, really tough game to win.  And you have to give a super human effort to win that game.  And frankly, we didn't give that effort.
It's rare.  You know, we make fun of some of his ‑‑ we call it his better basketball fundamentals.  You have to ask LeBron.  LeBron can explain it a lot better than I can.  It's better basketball fundamentals.  Dribbling the basketball.  It's actually pretty funny.

Q.  Your defense on the big guys throughout the whole playoffs has been to deny the ball getting to them.  Is that still the way you have to go, is deny the ball getting to them?  Is there a countermeasure you guys have?
SHANE BATTIER:  Garnett presents a different challenge because of his length and his agility.  I think you have to give him different looks.  There are certain points where it's better to deny him.  Maybe some of the places it's better to catch him and play him on the catch.
I don't think you can feed him a steady diet like we did Hibbert and West, and even Carmelo, because he's a different match‑up.

Q.  Shane, LeBron in the playoffs in Boston has‑‑ there's a pretty rich history there, both positive and negative.  What do you think is the personal challenge for him to kind of deal with all that, keep focused on the goal, and play team basketball?
SHANE BATTIER:  You know, honestly, that might have been a concern coming into this series, but it really is about our team at this point.  And whatever happened in the past, good, bad, indifferent, it was in the past.
I think LeBron is in a really good spot personally and professionally.  He's focused on what he needs to do for our team.

Q.  How have you seen him kind of turn the page on whatever happened in the past, good and bad?
SHANE BATTIER:  I wasn't here last year, but just talking to people who have been around him, he seems more settled.  He seems more at peace with where he is in his career and who he is.  Again, this is the first year I've played with him.  That's the sense that I gather.

Q.  What's been the most impressive about him in this one year you've spent with him?
SHANE BATTIER:  Boy, he sneezes and it's a trendy topic on Twitter.  I've said this before, he is a fascinating study, because he is really the first and most seminal sports figure in the information age.  Everything he does is reported and dissected and second‑guessed many times over.  And he handles everything with amazing grace and a patience that I don't know if other superstars from other eras would have been able to handle.
So knowing LeBron after this one year of playing with him, I have a new respect for what he goes through.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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