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NBA EASTERN CONFERENCE FINALS: PACERS v HEAT


May 22, 2013


LeBron James

Dwyane Wade


MIAMI, FLORIDA: Game One

Indiana Pacers   102
Miami Heat   103



Q.  LeBron, the final sequence, including whether the play changed after the timeout by the Pacers, if you were surprised that Hibbert wasn't in there?  And just your thought process on the play, please.
LeBRON JAMES:  Well, our play didn't change at all.  We went into the timeout, we had two different calls, and me and Spo looked at each other, and he asked me which one I felt comfortable doing.  I had enough time where I could get to the basket and make a play.
I don't know if I was surprised or not.  I really wasn't worried if Hibbert was in the game at all or if he was in.  I was worried about trying to get a bucket for our team.

Q.  LeBron, the decision there, once you were on the court and to basically go left, to have a step, did you ever think you may have to pull up in that situation?  Paul said maybe he should have played off of you a little bit, force you to shoot the jumper.
LeBRON JAMES:¬† I knew I had enough time to get to the rim.¬† Two‑plus seconds is plenty of time.¬† I only need one dribble to get to the rim.¬† And the set that we ran, the space that I had, you know, CB first having the first trigger, going to the rim for a lob, and Ray slipping to the corner, a thread and then I was able to be the option at that point and get to the rim.

Q.¬† Dwyane, is this how this series is going to go at this point?¬† I mean, teams will adjust and guys will make more shots and miss more shots and whatever, but do you have a sense this is just how this match‑up might go down?
DWYANE WADE:  Yeah, this is the Eastern Conference Finals.  We're the two best teams in the East.  We understand that it's a possession game.  We have to do a lot better next game taking care of the ball.
But, you know, as you see, any time it seemed like a team was about to pull away, the other team came back.  We can expect this for seven games.

Q.  For LeBron, did you feel George overcommit there on the final play?  Or Battier hit you in stride with the pass?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Shane definitely gave me a great pass.¬† All I had to do was just, you know‑‑ I peeked over my left shoulder.¬† I seen Paul George was a little out of place.¬† So I just took off.¬† I knew I had enough time to do either‑‑ I could either get to the rim or I could get one dribble in and get up a jumper or a shot.
So I seen him leaning a little bit.  Just a quick second.  I just took off.

Q.  For Dwyane, from your perspective, through your eyes, what was that mad scramble like when you fouled out of the game and gave Paul the three free throws?
DWYANE WADE:  That was unfortunate.  But, you know, you are sitting there and you can't really do much.  But the only thing I could do was walk up to LB at the timeout and say, hey, go win it.
So as you see, I was very excited afterwards.  I almost jumped in his arms.  But like I said, it was very unfortunate.  I'm glad we have enough to get the job done, no matter who is on the court.

Q.¬† LeBron, it seemed like your offense came in flurries in this game, and then you look at the final stat line and it's still 30‑10‑10.¬† Was there anything their defense was doing that you noticed there was opportunities at certain times?¬† Or was it flow‑of‑the‑game type of situation?
LeBRON JAMES:  Yeah, for me it's just flow of the game.  I take what the defense gives me.  I was able to turn the corner a few times and either get a look up at the shot or at the rim or find my bigs cutting and finishing some plays.  The contribution that we got from Bird tonight was unbelievable.  Without his effort we don't win this game.  Just his energy and his effort once again.
For me it's just the flow of the game.  I don't really predetermine what I'm going to do.  I just read and react.  The best thing about it, the coaching staff and my teammates put me in position to be successful, and I try to take advantage of it.

Q.¬† In a best‑of‑seven series with an emotional win like this, does it count a little more?
LeBRON JAMES:  We wish we could take two wins, but we only get one.  That's what it's all about.  No matter if you win by one or if you win by 30 or whatever the case may be.  You just want to win.  We have to be better Friday if we want to win again.  We'll come here to prepare tomorrow and see the ways that we can do that.

Q.  D, does that guy next to you ever do anything that can amaze you at this point?  Does he ever do anything that can amaze you?  Seems like after he hit that shot, you went over and you were excited.  He looked like, I'm supposed to do that.
DWYANE WADE:  Yeah, no matter how much you watch the game of basketball and no matter how much you played it, you get amazed by spectacular talent.  I think more than anything, I get to see the behind the scenes of what makes him special, special player.  More so than anything I'm happy for his success, I'm happy for when he does great things.  I know how much work he puts in on his game.  I don't think a lot of people give him credit for the work he puts in.
So, yeah, he continues to amaze I think the game of basketball, the world of basketball.

Q.  LeBron, can you talk about your nonchalant demeanor.  After you hit the shot, you almost felt like I'm supposed to do that.
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Well, I mean, like I said, my teammates put me in a position.¬† Coach Spo drove a good play to put me in position to be successful.¬† It's my job to go out there and make it happen.¬† I mean, I made a lay‑up.¬† It's not like I made something half‑court.¬† I made a lay‑up.¬† I've been doing that since I was eight years old.
I understand the circumstances a little bit.¬† It happened to have been in the Eastern Conference Finals.¬† When you practice something over and over and over, and you just‑‑ it's just second nature to you.
I also know, hey, we protect home court.  This is Game 1.  That's what it's about.

Q.¬† Guys, how soon after Chris Andersen was signed did you realize he would be as good a contributor as he has been and fit personality‑wise in the team?
DWYANE WADE:  I think he was a pleasant surprise.  Obviously we knew what he brought in Denver, but we didn't know how he would fit with our team.  We knew he was going to bring some energy.  We knew he was going to bring his effort every night, but we didn't know how he was going to fit.  He came right in and he fit in with this team like he's been here the whole time, the whole three years.
So he's been big for our success.  I mean, as you guys know, since he's been here, his record is impeccable.  His record is unbelievable.  He hasn't lost many games.  He just comes in whether it's 12 minutes, 6 minutes, 18 minutes, he's going to make an impact on the ballgame.  That's what we need out of that position.

Q.¬† LeBron, on your 30‑10‑10 tonight, Spo talked about how you might need to continue at that level for you guys to win this series.¬† Talk about it just from the emphasis of rebounding.¬† You raised your rebounding against this team last year.¬† How important is that?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† It's very important.¬† When we go against guys that are taller than us, a little bit bigger than us, our front court and our back court have to help out with the rebounding.¬† I got to go out and‑‑ if I have to average ten rebounds in this series or whatever the case may be, I have to be out there for my bigs.¬† My bigs are fighting with Hibbert and fighting with David West all game long.¬† When some of those long rebounds come off, myself and D‑Wade and Norris have to be able to clean the glass to help our bigs out.
So just trying to contribute the best way I can when I'm out on the floor.

Q.¬† LeBron, on the last two possessions, when you scored with lay‑ups, Hibbert was not on the floor.¬† Vogel said when he came in, maybe next time I'll put him out there.¬† Paul George said, I'm 100% sure that he would have been there at the rim if he was out there.¬† How do you think it might have been different if he was out there?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† I mean, I don't know.¬† We don't‑‑ any of us know that?¬† D‑Wade was not there either, because he fouled out.¬† I mean, you can't say what would have been different.¬† Ten guys out on the floor, and I was able to get the lane against George Hill in the first one, and I was able to get the lane on Paul George in the second one.
You know, I was on attackwhen Hibbert was in the game, I was on attack when Hibbert wasn't in the game.  That's not for us to worry about.

Q.  LeBron on the last play, if you said Chris was an option and Ray was an option, how soon after the inbounds pass did you realize they were no longer options for you?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Once I got the ball I was the only option.¬† I was the only option at that point.¬† Especially with only being 2‑plus seconds.¬† As unselfish as a player I am, I cannot no way try to make a pass at that point.
Like I said, I'm blessed to be in that position.  My teammates put me in a great position each and every night.  My coaching staff.  And I just try to come through for them.

Q.  I think you guys did this before when you played them, why the decision for you to cover Paul and him to cover Lance?  And then if you can take us through that last play regulation where Paul George hit the three, what happened there?  And if there was any sort of discussion on fouling in that situation?
DWYANE WADE:¬† Well, like I said earlier, when it comes to certain games, certain match‑ups, myself and LeBron, we kind of talk amongst each other.¬† We kind of know what we want to do.¬† We played them different times and have started off on Stephenson and he started off on George.¬† I think we liked kind of at the end of the season when we played them and I started the game on George and he started on Stephenson.¬† So it was just a read more so than anything.
That last play I wasn't involved in it.
LeBRON JAMES:¬† We covered it the best way we could.¬† George, going through my mind now, Paul George entered the ball to David West and he got the hand‑off.¬† So UD and D‑Wade switched.¬† D‑Wade ended up on David West and I was on George Hill.¬† Me and D‑Wade switched.¬† He got a DHL pass from David West, and he launched one.¬† He launched one from a couple of feet behind the three‑point line.¬† I was able to get a little strip on it, but he hit a big shot.¬† Tough shot.
So we still had an opportunity to win the game with 0.7.  We just weren't able to get a good look at the end of regulation.

Q.  LeBron, it was like five hours ago by now, but the play with your elbow, any problems with that?  And also did you get any feel for whether there's concern about Mario's status going into Friday?
LeBRON JAMES:  I mean, after it happened, I landed on the elbow, and it would have happened when I decided not to wear my elbow sleeve.  I shot the two free throws.  My fingers were still tingling a little bit.  But it kind of wore off.
There's concern for our starting point guard.  Any time one of our players go down, especially in the postseason, where every game and every possession counts and we need everyone out there, there's a little concern.  But I think our training staff is amazing.  Rio is a tough guy.  So we'll see what happens.  Hopefully he's available by Friday.  He should be.  We don't know.  If not Norris will step up, and I know Mike Miller is looking for the opportunity to probably be back on the floor.  You know, call in the righty.
THE MODERATOR:  All right, guys.  Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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