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NBA FINALS: SPURS v HEAT


June 20, 2013


LeBron James


MIAMI, FLORIDA: Game Seven

San Antonio Spurs - 88
Miami Heat - 95


Q.  Two things, LeBron:  First of all, how does it feel to be a multiple champion?  How does this compare to last year's one?
LeBRON JAMES: ¬†It feels great.¬† This team is amazing.¬† And the vision that I had when I decided to come here is all coming true.¬† Through adversity, through everything we've been through, we've been able to persevere and to win back‑to‑back championships.¬† It's an unbelievable feeling.¬† I'm happy to be part of such a first‑class organization.

Q.  Can you talk about stepping outside, hitting the five threes.  What did you see that led you to do that?  When you're making shots like that, you're totally unstoppable.  I'm sure you would agree.
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Yeah, I am.¬† (Laughter).¬† You said it.¬† I mean, two‑and‑a‑half games I watched film, and my mind started to work and I said, okay, this is how they're going to play me for the whole series.¬† I looked at all my regular‑season stats, all my playoff stats, and I was one of the best mid‑range shooters in the game.¬† I shot a career high from the three‑point line.
I just told myself why ‑‑ don't abandon what you've done all year.¬† Don't abandon now because they're going under.¬† Don't force the paint.¬† If it's there, take it.¬† If not, take the jumper.¬† And I think the last‑‑ I did a good job in Game 4.¬† Didn't make as many shots I would like to from the outside in Game 5, but I kept on getting into the rhythm of it.
Just saying everything you've worked on, the repetition, the practices, the off‑season training, no matter how big the stakes are, no matter what's on the line, just go with it.¬† And I was able to do that.

Q.  LeBron, three straight Finals trips.  Two straight championships.  Do you guys feel like you're just starting to scratch the surface of the potential of this thing?
LeBRON JAMES:  I hope so.  I hope so.  I mean, this is what it's all about.  I came here to win championships and to be able to go back to back.  Two championships in three years so far.  It's the ultimate.  I don't want to think about next year right now, what our possibilities are next year.  Got to take full advantage of this one.  It's an unbelievable moment for our team.

Q.  LeBron, you were drafted ten years ago this week.  Can you put in perspective the improvement you've made as a player.  And was that on display tonight?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† I mean, I said before the series that I was a better player than I was last time I faced the Spurs.¬† Didn't look that way the first couple of games.¬† But I stuck with it.¬† Through all that adversity and throughout, I guess, the rhythm that I was in at that point, I just kept going.¬† Just trusted all the work that I put into my game.¬† And to be able to come through for your teammates, for me, I think‑‑ you know more than anybody how much I care about my teammates and hate letting my teammates down.¬† To be able to come through for my teammates in the biggest moment on the biggest stage makes me more satisfied than anything in the world.

Q.¬† LeBron, you have probably taken two, maybe three weeks off since you came out of the cave after the 2011 Finals.¬† How is it possible that‑‑ you haven't really complained about it either, with the whole thing on your shoulders you come up with 37 tonight.¬† How is that possible even for you?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† The saying "hard work pays off" is a true testament of what happened tonight.¬† I know I'm not the only one that works hard.¬† Give a lot of credit, first of all‑‑ I forgot to state that at the beginning‑‑ to the San Antonio Spurs.¬† First‑class organization.¬† First‑class players.¬† But to be able to put in the work that I've put in since I got out of the cave, like you said, after that Dallas series and for it to pay off like this, it's the ultimate.¬† It makes you want to work even harder.
I guarantee myself I'll take more than two‑and‑a‑half weeks off this offseason.¬† I need it.

Q.  Do you know when the next time you're going to touch a ball will be?  Have you thought about some of the other stuff you have going on this summer?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† I have a basketball camp in Las Vegas.¬† The top 100 high‑school kids from July 5th to the 9th.¬† Hopefully I don't see many of you guys.¬† I don't mind seeing you guys, by the way.¬† I probably will touch a basketball to mess around a little bit.¬† But I don't know, I haven't set my goals yet for my offseason training.¬† I will, but not right now.¬† Please don't ask me about my offseason training right now.

Q.¬† LeBron, with regard to the last two games, defensively, Tony Parker had gotten away from you guys.¬† What did you do in the last two games as a team‑‑ because you ended up on him a lot‑‑ to shut him down and corral him?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Just pressure.¬† Trying to keep a body on him at all times.¬† I think more than anything, having guys back in transition.¬† I think we all know, if you watch the NBA over the last ten years, Tony Parker is always in the top‑‑ I don't know‑‑ five, ten at points in the paint.¬† It comes from early transition buckets and also comes from halfcourt sets when guys are just not alert.
So our number one key with Tony Parker was when the ball went up, made or misses, we had to get three guys back.¬† The guy that was guarding him, the big and another guy to see bodies, because if it's one‑on‑one with Tony Parker, he's going to make you pay.¬† He's going to make you pay.¬† And the simple fact that we just keyed in on our details defensively, it helped us out a lot.

Q.¬† LeBron, so many people are saying this was tougher, but everybody always says the first one is the toughest.¬† Was this tougher for you?¬† And what made it‑‑
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Last year when I was sitting up here, with my first championship, I said it was the toughest thing I had ever done.¬† This year I'll tell last year he's absolutely wrong.¬† This was the toughest championship right here, between the two.¬† I mean, everything that we've been throughout this postseason, especially in these Finals, to be down‑‑ we were down every odd game.¬† We were down 1‑0.¬† We tied it.¬† We were able to take a lead, but then we were down.¬† We were down‑‑ we were scratching for our lives in Game 6 down five with 28 seconds to go.
To be able to win that game and force a Game 7 is a true testament of our, I guess, perseverance.  And us being able to handle adversity throughout everything.  It meant a lot for us to be able to do that and force a Game 7 and being able to close out at home.

Q.  What did it mean to see Dwyane come out, do what he did early, aggressive, even waving you off at the half to make that last shot.
LeBRON JAMES:¬† Right.¬† He was big‑time tonight.¬† He didn't wait.¬† He had I think five or six one‑on‑one iso situations, jumpers.¬† He was in attack mode all night.¬† He had 10 rebounds.¬† He had 23 points.¬† He had two blocked shots.
I think one of the most important plays of the game, that he didn't even make, was his attack at the rim when he tried to dunk on Tim Duncan, and Tim Duncan got a piece of it.¬† It just showed at that point you knew that this was the D‑Wade that we've all wanted to see.
What can you say?¬† He's a three‑time champion, gold medalist, Finals MVP.¬† He's one of the greatest two‑guards, one of the greatest players the NBA has ever seen.¬† He continues to add to his r√©sum√©.

Q.  LeBron, you've won it all now for two years in a row.  What's the goal now for your career going forward?  Where do you want to go from here?
LeBRON JAMES:¬† I mean, I have a few goals.¬† My goal, one of my first goals is to continue to inspire the youth to want to play this game of basketball or to be better at whatever they do.¬† I mean, I love kids.¬† Hopefully tonight I was able to inspire a lot.¬† Inspire millions to‑‑ no matter what they've gone through in their lives at that point in time, they can always overcome it.¬† That's the first thing.
Second thing for me is to continue to lead my teammates.  Every single day in practice, every single day in film sessions, I know the grass isn't always green and there's going to be trials and tribulations.  But hopefully I can continue to be the leader for my teammates.
And then lastly, I want to be, if not the greatest, one of the greatest to ever play this game.  And I will continue to work for that, and continue to put on this uniform and be the best I can be every night.

Q.  So what do you do to reward yourself now?  Because that was one of the most grueling stretches the last month of the season, postseason, that anyone has ever seen.  What do you do to reward yourself?
LeBRON JAMES:  I need to rest my body.  I do.  As much as I love working out and as much as I love getting better, at this point I think the smartest thing to do is to rest my body.  Give my body a break.  I think that's the smartest thing.  I got a wedding coming up with my beautiful fiancée.  And it will be an unbelievable wedding now that we've won, instead of losing.  I might have called it off if we lost (laughter).
So now it's going to be one of the best weddings ever.  I'm going to sign off with that.  And I will see you guys when I see you guys.  And please continue to motivate me.  I need you guys.  Thank you.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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