July 16, 2021
Q. You’ve talked about how physically exhausting it is chasing Chris Paul around. How much of these best two out of three to finish this thing is just going to be digging deep and fighting through the pain and exhaustion of a long series.
JRUE HOLIDAY: Yeah, it's going to be a battle. I mean, but I think both sides know the price and both have a goal. You've just got to leave it out there.
Q. You seem to be really good about getting over screens, especially important against Chris Paul. What are your secrets of scrambling around those screens and everything?
JRUE HOLIDAY: No secrets. Just trying to make it uncomfortable for him. Sometimes going over the top, sometimes going under. We know he has a sidestep three that's very effective. He also has the mid-range, which he rarely misses. Every time he misses it's like you're surprised that he missed.
Really just trying to be there, be around all the time, make him uncomfortable as possible.
Q. Obviously, you guys got to win one here in Phoenix. What do you guys got to do differently than the first two games?
JRUE HOLIDAY: I think the first two games they kind of had everything they wanted: transition points, offensive rebounds, threes, mid-range, free throws.
I think since then we've kind of taken care of -- we're doing a good job of slowing them down in a lot of those areas and continuing to get better at that.
Q. I'm trying to figure out, in Games 2 and 4 you guys have shot as a team below 30 percent from three. I'm trying to figure out if that's the Suns playing really good perimeter defense, and the reason I'm asking you is in a recent press conference you said they're leaving you open, you have to keep taking those shots. Do you think they're prioritizing this as much as paint defense and transition? Are they really concentrating on the arc there?
JRUE HOLIDAY: I don't know. It could be personnel based. I'm not shooting the ball well, so that's probably the reason why I'm open. I do think they try to pack the paint because that is one of our biggest strengths, and it's kind of hard to take away the paint and the three. But they do sell out to three, which is very smart. Try to make us make tough-contested twos, which is probably a key to the game.
Q. Another thing I wanted to ask, up in press row we can really follow the stats. I don't know if you get those statistical reports or if it even matters. P.J. said you don't care what you're shooting or as a team Coach never says, all right, back off, it's not following. That's a ridiculous suggestion, right, for us to second-guess you guys? You need to shoot at all times?
JRUE HOLIDAY: Yeah, you need to shoot at all times. You second-guess it or you don't shoot it, you're going to get yelled at. I just feel like that's the kind of confidence that our coaching staff and our teammates have in each other. You're shooting the ball not well and doing all that and you are taking it but being aggressive and you win the game, it's okay.
I feel like sometimes when you lose you probably get a little down on yourself. But at the end of the day, man, if you don't take the shot, then how is it going to go in.
Q. In Game 4, there was a lot of physicality, a lot of calls that were very doubtful. I want to ask you, when the game goes like that, very physical, is that something that benefits you guys in a way since you guys defend pretty well?
JRUE HOLIDAY: For sure. I feel like we've continually been a physical team throughout all the playoffs, especially defensively, attacking the paint. We've been very physical trying to get into the paint. That's one of our strengths.
But I think one of the biggest things is we don't really complain about it. We know what it is. We know that it's the Finals and people are human and you're going to get some calls and you're not going to get some.
At the end of the day, just continue to be aggressive and do what you do.
Q. How important will it be to take care of the ball in order to win Game 5? And what are your thoughts on Giannis' performance in these whole NBA Finals?
JRUE HOLIDAY: It's going to be huge to take care of the ball. The Suns at home are -- are they undefeated at home, the Suns? They're virtually undefeated at home. They play very, very well here. They have so much confidence here. The crowd is crazy.
Taking care of the ball and not getting them buckets in transition is going to be huge.
But the way Giannis is playing, he's been playing like he's MVP caliber. He's playing like he wants to win the Finals. You've seen times where he's just put the team on his back. Giannis is being Giannis, and we have to continue to just try to help and support him.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports