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June 18, 2013

Erik Spoelstra


San Antonio Spurs - 100
Miami Heat - 103

Q.  Coach, you get Game 7 on your floor.  How do you guys prepare for them?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  Look, if you said September 29th when we started on our trip going to China if we could decide this season with a Game 7 in our building, every single one of us take it.  You know, they're the best two words in team sports, "Game 7".

Q.  Erik, in the fourth quarter where LeBron lost the headband and he turned into a different player, what did you see from him in terms of the determination to not let you guys lose in that fourth quarter?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  An absolute desperation and will.  To do it on both ends, obviously he had an extremely tough cover with Parker, making every play for us, really aggressive, able to get into the paint.  But just gave us that life when we were down by 10.

Q.  Erik, Ray Allen obviously has shown a flair in his year with you guys for making the big shots, as he has obviously throughout his career.  That couldn't have been the way you drew it up obviously.  What goes through your mind in that moment?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  We actually got a couple of decent looks out of it.  LeBron's first look, at least it was clean.  That's all you can ask for at that time.  But Chris made a heck of an effort to give us that second possession and found Ray.  And Ray did what he's done for so many years.  And we've seen it on the other side so many times.

Q.  Erik, you mentioned Chris, his defense down the stretch after you put him back in the game, looked like he was pretty much everywhere.  How would you evaluate the way he played?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:¬† The rest really gave him an extra step in that fourth quarter, and he came in and again with LeBron, he really covered a lot of ground.¬† And that's probably one of the toughest things to guard in this league, Tony Parker and Duncan pick‑and‑roll with all the shooting and the space.
But Chris was tremendous down the stretch for us.

Q.  Erik, to put it simply, do you think this will go down as one of the greatest Finals games in NBA history?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  I don't know.  We're not even thinking about that right now.  That's for you guys to decide.  We're just looking forward to having a Game 7 in our building.

Q.  You guys made a pretty big run with a lineup that did not include Dwyane Wade.  Same thing earlier in this series.  Is that something to look for moving forward in this series?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  Look, we have to get contributions from everybody.  This is elite competition.  Two teams that aren't backing up.  You have to play different rotations and sometimes different rotations work at different times of the game.  We had other rotations that were working extremely well.
So we'll see what happens in the next one.

Q.  Coach, you guys were down five with under 30 seconds left.  There were some fans heading to the exits.  There were some staffers preparing for the ceremony.  How do you keep your guys focused?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  Come on.  At that time I don't think anybody noticed.  That's probably the best way to live in life is in the moment, and that will guarantee you're in the moment.

Q.  Coach, could you talk about the impact Chris Andersen had today.
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:¬† He gave us great energy.¬† He did what he normally does.¬† Was covering a lot of ground, at the rim, at the three‑point line and playing with great athleticism.¬† And that's why we value him so much.

Q.  Coach, do you at all feel lucky to be playing in this Game 7, the way the team has played?  Certainly not the way the team played in the regular season.  Do you feel fortunate at all to be in this situation to play for the title on Thursday?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  I'm not sure what you mean by that.  But absolutely, we feel very grateful we have an opportunity to play for a title in a Game 7.  Our guys aren't looking for games that are less meaningful.  We're looking for games that are more meaningful.  And there's nothing bigger than a Game 7.
But look, to say that it's been all us really is a discredit to the competition.  We're facing an equal rival right now, and that's competition at its best.

Q.  Erik, Tim Duncan had a monster first half but in the second half he only scored in single digits.  Was there anything specific you changed?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  No, not necessarily.  Just trying to do it harder and better.  And sometimes those are the bounces of the ball as well.

Q.¬† Today you held San Antonio to just five three‑pointers made.¬† Was the plan for today, and I guess going into Game 7, to just stay home on the three‑point shooters and play Parker and Duncan straight up?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  Well, just with a better awareness of them.  But they also got 60 in the paint.  So they did get to a big part of their game.

Q.  I mean, is that a tradeoff you're willing to accept?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  Typically we don't like tradeoffs, especially at this level.  You have to try to do both.

Q.  Erik, in a nutshell, what was the biggest difference in the way your team played from the fourth quarter on compared to the first three quarters?
COACH ERIK SPOELSTRA:  We competed those other quarters.  Really.  I mean, it's competition.  Even when you're playing at your fiercest and highest level, they're going to be doing the same, and that's where you get measured.  That's what every competitor wants is to have the ultimate level of competition where you get tested.  And we were tested, and they were tested as well.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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