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June 13, 2012

LeBron James


Q.  When you guys played the Pacers and the Celtics, those teams every game, same starting lineup, same approach.  You guys have changed lineups because of Chris's injury but also changed approaches a lot.  How difficult has it been going through these rounds with different defensive assignments, different philosophies, different approaches and different lineups?
LEBRON JAMES:  It's not been too difficult.  It's just been challenging.  When you go out there with different lineups from game to game, it's challenging for sure.  But we've been able to figure it out.  We've been able to figure it out on the fly and find ways to make it successful either for that game or that series in general.

Q.  I talked to some Thunder players and they said one of the most intriguing aspects about this series is so many players are diversified defensively and we saw some of that last night.  Do you envision a lot of weird match‑ups throughout the whole series?
LEBRON JAMES:  Yeah, I think so.  Just because of the depth of teams and both teams have so many guys that can do so many things defensively, that can guard multiple positions defensively.  You know, it allows both coaches to be flexible.  You can see that throughout the course of the series.

Q.  We were talking with Russell Westbrook earlier and he said he started the trend with the glasses; is that right?
LEBRON JAMES:  No, that's not right.

Q.  I didn't think so.  What's the story behind that?
LEBRON JAMES:  There's no stories behind it.  You know, it's a look, it's a fashion thing.  But he absolutely didn't start it.

Q.  Who started it?
LEBRON JAMES:  I don't know who started it, honestly.  I think know I've wearing mine for about two years now.  But I don't know who started it.  None of us started it.  It could have started back in the '70s or '80s.  I'm serious.  I mean, fashion comes and goes, decades‑‑

Q.  All four of you guys had on the glasses last night.  Was there something behind that?  Did you guys get together and say we're all going to wear lensless glasses?
LEBRON JAMES:  No, we didn't.  It just happened like that.

Q.  Dwyane said earlier this year that there was a point where he sat down with you and told you he wanted you to be you, be a leader and take over.  Do you ever find yourself having to flip it with him and trying to tell him that you need him to be Dwyane and be the guy that‑‑
LEBRON JAMES:  Absolutely, I tell him a lot.  A lot of times I try to let him figure it out on his own, but sometimes I go to him and tell him I need one of those games from him, I need one of those performances from him because he still has it.  He knows he still has it, too, but every player needs a little kick every now and then, no matter how time tested they are.  Yeah, I try to continue to let him know how important he is to this team, which he should know, but he also needs to be D Wade and not worry about deferring as much.

Q.  Does it surprise you the second year in that you guys still find those moments where you're trying to figure out when to defer and when to take over?
LEBRON JAMES:  I'm not surprised because it's nowhere near close to last year.  This year it's happened maybe a handful of times, I can probably count on my hands as many times it happened as much basketball as we play.  Last year it happened a lot.  It happened every week or every other week where we was trying to figure out ways we can help our team or we can figure out ways we can help one another.  But it wasn't happened much this year, so it's not surprising when it comes up.  It's just reassurance.

Q.  From an outsider, it doesn't appear that you play with the joy or the theatrics that you once did.  If that's true, is that just a sign of getting older or is it a change of venue?  What do you think is the answer to that?
LEBRON JAMES:  I think I have a lot of fun with the game.  You know, I'm back to having‑‑ this year in particular, I have a lot of fun or I've had a lot of fun with the game.  I got back to what drove me to the game and what made me fall in love with the game.  It's been a great ride this whole year, and just doing the things that need to be done to help our ballclub win and for me to have fun on and off the floor.  I feel good.

Q.  When you heard that Shane was starting on Durant, what was your reaction, and then are you going to‑‑ do you expect that to change?  Do you want that to change and have you cover him tomorrow?
LEBRON JAMES:  I mean, it's whatever, honestly.  I mean, I will do whatever it takes for our team to win.  If I need to start on him, I will.  I kind of‑‑ coach gave us an idea for Game 1, and we went with it.  We still had an opportunity to win Game 1, we just didn't make enough plays.

Q.  You mentioned talking to Dwyane every once in a while.  What have you or what will you say to him in a larger sense before Game 2?
LEBRON JAMES:  Oh, I don't know.  Like I said, I don't say something to him before every game.  I don't know even if I will for Game 2.  We'll see.  I don't have nothing planned as of right now what I may say to him to prepare him.  I mean, he's a winner, he's a veteran, he knows how to prepare, so forth, for a Finals game, this being his third.  We'll see.

Q.  On a separate note, when you feel at ease with your surroundings or where you are, where you're living, anything like that, how does that affect your play on the court?
LEBRON JAMES:  I mean, when you're at ease, honestly, the game becomes very easy for you.  For me it's just once I was comfortable with everything that was going on off the court, I was able just to let my preparation and all the years that I've put into playing the game of basketball just take care of itself.  I know how much work I've put into the game, and I don't dis‑appreciate the game in no way, I don't take it for granted me being in the position I'm in.  I kind of let it take care of itself, and it rewards me.

Q.  We saw in the last series with KG that there were very specific times where he would come out of games.  Even if it wasn't good for Boston at that point, it was good for them when he did go back in.  You're a different player, different point in your career, but knowing yourself, what is the rhythm that works best for you in terms of some rest during the course of a game no matter how important, and is there something about even seeking rest that you want to avoid right now?
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, it's a fine line, honestly, especially now being in The Finals.  There's always times where you would like to get a minute here, a minute there, two minutes there, and I've got to be more out with my coaching staff, as well, when I feel like I may need a minute here or a minute there and then I can go back into the game.  But there's also times where I may feel tired, but I'm playing well, we're playing well, so I don't want to mess up the rhythm, and this is a rhythm game.  It's a fine line with getting rest and just playing through it because I don't feel like I hurt my teammates when I am out there.  But it's just all about a communication thing, getting two‑minutes rest here, three‑minutes there.  It may can help.

Q.  What is the difference at this point in the year in terms of the timeouts, the longer breaks?  Does that make up for the time where you're actually sitting out game time?
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, I mean, any time the timeouts or the TV timeouts, the breaks, halftime, you get rest, you're able to recoup and reenergize.  I mean, it helps.

Q.  I know there were tactical reasons for you not to start possessions on Kevin because you can switch onto him when they screen, but you also mentioned recently not having any regrets in the last series.  You don't want to have any regrets.  Could you go through this series with no regrets if the buck doesn't stop with you defensively on KD?
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, this is one game.  We will make adjustments.  This is going to be a long series.  I'm not worried about the end of the series right now.

Q.  You've talked about during the Indiana series getting Dwyane some maybe easy looks earlier in the game, kind of got him going, got him into a flow, more so than maybe saying something off the court, is that what's necessary sometimes to help him break through?
LEBRON JAMES:  It is.  It is necessary for any scorer.  I mean, you look at last night, I mean, Kevin Durant had 10 points in transition, Russell Westbrook had 10 points in transition.  Scorers, when you get those easy transition buckets, the jump shot starts to feel more better, the pull‑up jumpers that are contested feel more better, and for D Wade and for myself, we feel the same way.  When you guys see us get out on the break and we got alley‑oop dunks and lay‑ups and things like that, we start to make a lot of plays.  I always try to make a conscious effort especially with D‑Wade to try to get him some easy ones, you know, get him a dunk in transition or get him a lay‑up or in half court where he's not facing the double‑team, what he's going to be facing for most of the game.  So it helps.

Q.  Touching on that, are you a better half‑court team when you and him are playing that two‑man game and you're getting him going?
LEBRON JAMES:  Well, I mean, every game is its own.  Sometimes we're good, we're great when we're playing our two‑man game, and other times it has our offense stagnant and it's not allowing us to get the ball from one side to the other.  I think we're very good offensively and in the half court when we're attacking, no matter what we're doing, either we're playing two‑man game or we're moving the ball from one side to the other and we're attacking the rim and getting to the free‑throw line.  So that's when we're at our best.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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