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June 19, 2013

Tim Duncan

MIAMI, FLORIDA: Practice Day

Q.  Tim, this is obviously a veteran team.  You guys have won a lot of close ones and lost some close ones.  But after last night, is there a need for Pop or someone to do or say something extra to kind of get people back off the deck?
TIM DUNCAN:  Things will be said.  People will talk.  And we had dinner as a team last night.  Guys exchanged whatever thoughts they had.  Outside of that, we know what's at stake.  We know what we have to do.  We know the opportunity we let slip through our fingers.  And we're not going to hang our head and dwell on that.  Tomorrow when that ball goes up, we'll all be ready.

Q.  What was that dinner like in terms of mood?  Was it cathartic in any way for you guys?
TIM DUNCAN:  Yeah, it helped.  It did.  The other option is a bunch of us go back to our rooms and sit in our rooms and sit there by ourselves and beat yourself up.  So it's always good to be around teammates and kind of get some stuff out in the open.  We did exactly that.  As I said, we'll be ready to rock.

Q.  Tim, a few minutes ago Pop was just asked if this team was more physically tired or emotionally tired.  How would you assess where this team is at physically and emotionally right now this morning?
TIM DUNCAN:  Well, we've got one more game.  We're not tired in any way.  There's no being tired at this point.  We've got one more game to win, and that's all that matters.

Q.¬† Tim, back in '05 you guys won a game off of the Pistons, 2005, Game 5, Pistons, Robert Horry three‑pointer there.¬† And the next game the Pistons came back and won in your building and forced a Game 7.¬† Can you use that as an example of how a strong‑minded team can sort of turn it around in 48 hours, forgetting what happened just the game before?
TIM DUNCAN:  Yeah.  We're exactly that.  We've been through a lot.  Our core of guys have been through a lot together.  We have some young talent here.  But they're going to feed off of what we do.  And Tony, Manu and I have been in this position before.  We're excited about the opportunity.
I think some of the guys kept saying if it was the beginning of the season, if somebody asked if we wanted to play a Game 7 for the NBA championship would you say yes or no, we would say yes.  So we're here.  We have this opportunity and we're going to take it.

Q.  Tim, obviously there's been a lot of talk about you not being in for the last couple of plays in regulation.  Is that how you guys have done it all year, taking you out so you guys can switch screens and stuff or was this something new?  What did you think when you weren't in there?
TIM DUNCAN:¬† Not new at all.¬† Something we've done all year.¬† Obviously we were trying to protect the three‑point line.¬† We had a lot of bodies in there to switch and get up on our shooters.¬† Two bad bounces off a rebound, we actually get the stops on the threes and bad bounces right back out for threes.
It is what it is.  Obviously, I want to be in there every minute of the game.  That's just how we're built.  But we've done it all year long.  We've been successful with it.  And if it comes down to it again, Pop will make the call again.

Q.  Tim, you had a couple of rough starts earlier in the series you had to work through to find a rhythm.  Last night wasn't one of those games where you started off poorly.  What changed in your approach?  And how can you sort of recreate that going into Game 7?
TIM DUNCAN:¬† Honestly, I don't think I did much different.¬† I made some shots.¬† That was about the difference in it, as simplistic as that sounds.¬† Able to get some good post position, get some shots to fall early on, and‑‑ but come fourth quarter, I kind of lost it in there, kind of got lost in the mix.
So hopefully I can sustain a little better.  That will be my goal for tomorrow, to sustain throughout a little better.

Q.  Tim, the close of regulation, the game looked like it was close to being in your grasp.  Ray Allen hits the three.  What goes through your mind at that moment?
TIM DUNCAN:  I honestly don't even remember.  I honestly don't remember.  I know we have whatever 30 seconds left and we're up five or whatever, and you are just crossing your fingers and hoping something like what happened wouldn't happen.  But it did, and obviously a lot of emotions in that time.  But we regrouped for overtime.  We get a lead, we make plays, and they just outplayed us.  I don't know that there's too much more to it than that.  I know you want to break it down either farther and make something of everything.  But they just played better than us in the overtime.

Q.  Long career, consistency has been one of your strengths.  But you've played in these games where the NBA title is there for the winner, whether it's just your team or both teams.  When you go into those games, including last night, is there a different mentality to you?  Do you prepare or think differently as you walk into the building, walk onto the court with so much at stake?
TIM DUNCAN:  I prepare for every game exactly the same.  That's why I feel every game is exactly the same.  Obviously the pressure is there, the stage is there, the energy is there.  But preparation doesn't change.
Approach, you don't go in saying some days you come in you want to be more aggressive than others.  Some days you come in and see what happens.  I honestly did not come in yesterday saying I'm going to try to score more.  I came in to see what the game gave me and took what it gave me.

Q.  Does that energy in the building affect you in any way?  Are you cognizant of the stakes of the game?
TIM DUNCAN:  Obviously, you would be dead if you didn't.  The energy is there.  What's at stake is there.  And it will be there again tomorrow.
Some people use it the right way.  Some people are hurt by it.  I don't feel I'm affected by it.  I use it however I can, and love the environment.

Q.  Tim, you played 44 minutes last night.  One day off.  Will fatigue, do you think, be any factor tomorrow?

Q.  What would it mean to you to win the title this way, to bounce back from what you guys are feeling right now and to pull it out in that kind of fashion?
TIM DUNCAN:  You know what, it's all about just winning the title.  It's not about situation or what has led up to it.  It's a great story for everybody else, but we're here for one reason.  One reason only:  It's to try to win this game tomorrow.  We have had a very good season thus far, and I think we just want to get to the game more than anything.  We just want to see what happens and be able to leave everything out there.
We feel that obviously we like our chances, and to be in this situation, a Game 7, we're just going to leave it all out there and see what happens.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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