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NBA FINALS: HEAT v THUNDER


June 21, 2012


Kevin Durant

Russell Westbrook


MIAMI, FLORIDA: Game Five

Oklahoma City Thunder - 106
Miami Heat - 121


Q.  Kevin, start with you.  I'm guessing we can't imagine what emotions you're going through, but if you could tell us those, the sadness of tonight, but then perhaps the pride in what you guys accomplished this season.
KEVIN DURANT:  It hurts.  It hurts, man.  We're all brothers on this team, and it just hurts to go out like this.  We made it to The Finals, which was cool for us, but we didn't want to just make it there.  Unfortunately we lost, so it's tough.  It's tough, man.  That's the only way I can explain it.  But as a whole, I'm proud of the guys on how we fought all season.  During the lockout we came together as a group and worked hard, and we will continue to work hard.
I wouldn't want to play with anybody else.  I wouldn't want to play for any other city.  I'm just blessed to be a part of this organization, and hopefully we can get back.

Q.  Russell, what did they do differently?  It looked like they were doing something differently in this ballgame against you, keeping you from going where you wanted to go against what you did in the last game?
RUSSELL WESTBROOK:¬† They just attacked the ball.¬† They did a good job of attacking us on our pick‑and‑roll and attacking the ball and making it tough.

Q.  Kevin, can you talk about the way you lost tonight.  Every game had been such a good game.  A blowout tonight, is this the kind of game that can linger, maybe even in a good way, sort of gnaw at you in the offseason, make you do anything differently to get back here?
KEVIN DURANT:  Well, whether we would have won or lost I was going to come back this summer, everybody was going to come back this summer and work extremely hard, win or lose.  Tonight those guys were hot, Mike Miller's seven threes, they got hot at the right time.  They made ten last game and 16 this game.
They got hot.  You've got to tip your hat to them.  They came out and played a hell of a series, won four games in a row to take the championship.  They played well.  But we've just got to continue to keep working, keep working, and like I said, hopefully next year we come back stronger.

Q.  In the end did it come down to defense from Miami, is that why they're champion?
RUSSELL WESTBROOK:  They just found a way to win, man.  I don't think our guys came out and didn't want to defend, but just unfortunate for us and how hard these guys work on this team to get better, how much film we watched to try to stop them.  I don't know what it came down to, but they just were the better team.
KEVIN DURANT:  Their defense is really good.  Those guys are really good over there.  I didn't want to admit it during the series, but now that it's over, those guys are really good.  Last team standing, so you've got to tip your hat.
It was unfortunate for us, man, we wanted it so bad.  But we've all got to keep our heads high.  I'm a positive guy, so I am going to continue to keep my head high.

Q.  Could you guys both describe what was going on on your bench as the game wound down and why you did it.
RUSSELL WESTBROOK:  Just thanking everybody, man, for the support, just going down the line and making sure everybody stayed positive, just making sure everybody knew that we worked hard, and we know what this feeling feels like.  We'll remember this feeling, and that will push everybody in the summer, just try to keep everybody going and keep everybody's heads up.
KEVIN DURANT:  Well, we're not frontrunners.  We're not guys that are just happy when things are going well.  It's the toughest time we've ever been through, and we want to do the same thing we would do if we won the game.  We hug each other, tell each other how much we love playing alongside each other, and thank them for what they've done all season, every guy down the line, coaches, everybody that worked with us every single day, and we worked together and worked hard every single day.
We just thanked each other for this season.  But we all know this hurts.  We've got to continue to keep working.

Q.  Kevin, you spent the offseason working with LeBron, you saw how motivated he was.  Did you see in those summer workouts what sort of manifested itself here at the end?  And could you see this was going to be an everything season for LeBron?  And did you see that through these Finals with him play?
KEVIN DURANT:  He played extremely well, extremely well.  Like I say, I'm not one for giving guy credit during the season, but it's over with, and that guy is an unbelievable player and an unbelievable person.  I enjoyed working out with him this summer.  It was fun playing against him in The Finals, but you could just tell he was very focused from the beginning of the season.
You know, it was a storybook season for him, MVP, I'm assuming he got Finals MVP.  Hopefully we can get a gold medal together this summer.  That guy played phenomenal basketball all season, and congrats to them.

Q.  Kevin, going forward, are you the type of guy that has to have something negative to turn into fuel, or are you the type that wants to find the positives out of this season and build off those?
KEVIN DURANT:  I'm going to find the positives and the negatives.  It was tough losing The Finals.  We got to The Finals, had a tough road to get here.  But we've just got to move past it, I guess, man.  It's going to hurt for a little bit.  We've got to move past it.

Q.  Near the end you two and James Harden were standing in the corner, the three guys that are really the hopes of the franchise are pinned on.  What were you guys discussing at that point?
RUSSELL WESTBROOK:¬† Just we've got to get better.¬† We hugged each other and told each other to embrace this feeling and remember this feeling.¬† We kind of looked around and just‑‑ we've got to get better.¬† We've got to be the guys that come back and push everybody next season and just got to get better, man, before we can find a way to get back here.

Q.  After the game the camera saw you with your family there and getting emotional.  I know you can't anticipate how you're going to feel, but did you think you would be that emotional at that moment?  And what was going through your head just at that time?
KEVIN DURANT:  I didn't think I would get that emotional.  It was a tough, tough game, tough series.  My mom and my dad have been there from the beginning.  So like I said, win or lose, they're going to always be there for me.  You know, I'm not going to just hug them because we won a game.  We lost the series, lost The Finals, I'm still going to thank them for all their support they've showed me.  They hurt like I hurt.  That's what you want your parents to go through.
It's tough for me, and I could tell in my mom's face and my dad's face, it was tough for them just to see us lose.
I'm going to continue to be me.  I'm going to continue to work hard every single day, and like Russell said, hopefully we get back, but we're just going to take it a day at a time.

Q.¬† Russell, specifically to this game, Kevin hit a shot in the lane to cut it to seven in the third, and they went on a 19‑1 run.¬† What happened during that stretch?¬† It seemed like it was getting a little chippy.
RUSSELL WESTBROOK:  Well, they hit some tough shots, man.  Kevin, James, guys contested.  Their threes, they hit some rainbow threes that kind of kept them going.
If we get chippy, it's The Finals and guys don't want to go home.  But that wasn't the series in the whole, just from them few possessions.

Q.  Russ, you mentioned how much film and how much work you guys put in even just in this series.  How proud are you of your teammates for sticking together?
RUSSELL WESTBROOK:  Oh, very proud, man, very proud.  I personally want to thank them for believing in me, the whole coaching staff, organization, fans.  They stuck with me, regardless of what I've done and what I do for the team.  And the group of guys that we have always stick together regardless of what happens, win, lose.  We all stick together, and we want to come back and be better, and that's one thing I love about this team.
KEVIN DURANT:  Thank you guys for everything you did this season, good or bad.  We appreciate it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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