NBA Finals: Lakers vs. Heat
Monday, October 5, 2020
Los Angeles Lakers
Q. Just wondering what stood out the most to you
when you went through the film last night?
LeBRON JAMES: Our turnovers. Our turnovers really
killed us. We understand that we can’t turn the ball over
versus this team. We also had some breakdowns
defensively throughout the course of the game that we’re
not accustomed to having. Those will be cleaned up in
Q. You guys have responded pretty well after losses
in the playoffs so far. I’m wondering if there’s a
common theme between those different times, and are
you seeing that same kind of mentality now?
LeBRON JAMES: We’re able to take a loss and
understand why we lost. Understand things that we should
have done better and things that we can apply to the next
game to be better. We’re right back at that moment once
again with the opportunity to be better than we were in the
Look forward to the opportunity tomorrow night.
Q. Specifically with Anthony, when he’s had off nights
or what have you, he’s always responded in a really
big way. He’s talked about you always kind of knowing
how to approach him after a night when he’s struggled.
What’s your approach been with him today and what
do you expect from him tomorrow?
LeBRON JAMES: I expect him to be AD. I’m looking
forward to getting out on the floor with him once again
Q. You’ve been in the Finals 10 times now. You’ve
been up in series, you’ve been down in series. What’s
it like to process the time off in between games
coming off a loss?
LeBRON JAMES: Pretty much the same coming off a win
for me. Until the series is completed, I kind of stay on
edge, stay locked in on the job at hand. Obviously, no one
wants to ever lose. You hate that feeling, especially when
you know you didn’t play your best, and I definitely wasn’t
at my best last night from an individual standpoint. So I
take that responsibility and I take that with a lot of passion
and understanding of how I can be much better in the
Throughout the postseason, I stay even keel. As I’ve
grown in this game and I’ve grown over the years, I kind of
stay even keel, understanding that there’s always another
opportunity to get better. We have that opportunity today
and also tomorrow night in the game.
Q. You’re wearing a “More Than a Vote” shirt right
now. In terms of trying to influence change, thinking
back eight years ago when you wore those hoodies as
a statement of Trayvon Martin, what are the biggest
things you’ve learned about impacting change off the
court? Is there advice you now would have given
yourself eight years ago when you kind of started this
LeBRON JAMES: That you can’t get caught up in what
everybody else thinks, because everyone is not going to
always agree with your movement. Everyone is not going
to agree with your words. Everyone is not going to agree
with your passion. Everyone is not going to always agree
with why you’re doing it, things of that nature. If you’re true
to it and it hits home and it hits the heart, then it shouldn’t
matter. And it doesn’t, because you have the knowledge
and you have the passion and you have the support to be
able to shed light on situations that you feel are either
unjust or wrong.
There’s a thing called common sense. You know the
difference between right and wrong. It’s something I’ve
always grew up on. My mother always told me [about]
being able to understand the difference between right and
wrong and noticing it and being able to have that feeling.
To sit back and think eight years ago when we sat in
Detroit in the ballroom as a part of the Miami Heat team,
and we all decided to put our hoodies on in a reflection, in
a remembrance of Trayvon Martin and that tragic incident,
we knew that it was going to be uncomfortable to a lot of
people. But we didn’t care, because we understood how
much it hit home for us and a lot of our guys having sons of
their own. We could imagine if our kid was to leave home
and not return. I think that’s what it boils down to.
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Q. In terms of talking to opponents on the floor, are
you a guy who just responds to trash talk? Do you
initiate it? As your status has moved up in the league,
has it changed? Have different players said different
things or do they not want to talk to you because they
don’t want to get you going? How does that equation
LeBRON JAMES: No, I’ve always been a guy who kind of
let his game do the talking. But when guys get to talking, I
can do that, as well. I’ve always tried to let my game do
Some guys like to talk their way through the basketball
game. I think it helps them out personally. There’s always
communication going on on the floor. For me personally,
as long as it doesn’t get disrespectful, I’m fine with it.
But I’ve never really started up a trash-talking dialogue.
That’s just not me. I believe the way I play the game is
enough trash talking in itself.
Q. From just a strategy standpoint, Bam is the type of
big who is obviously a really great playmaker but he
doesn’t space the floor so much with his shooting.
The guys that Miami plays at the position now, Meyers
and Olynyk, both do. How much different does that
force you guys to be defensively? You talked about
those defensive breakdowns last night. I imagine
spacing had something to do with a couple of them.
LeBRON JAMES: I think it all boils down to, no matter
who’s in the lineup for those guys, they’re a great team. It’s
just that simple. They’re going to put you in positions that
may feel uncomfortable, that will be uncomfortable,
throughout the course of 48 minutes, and we have to be
able to adjust. There’s things that Meyers and Kelly do that
Bam doesn’t do, but we also understand that there’s things
Bam does that not too many guys in this league can do.
They create different challenges depending on who’s out
on the floor.
When there’s five guys out on the floor for the Miami Heat,
they’re going to play how they play. They’re going to move
the ball, they’re going to move with pace, they’re going to
share the ball. They’ve got guys that can get into the paint.
They’ve got guys that can shoot threes. They’ve got guys
that command double teams and things of that nature. It
doesn’t matter who’s out on the floor for them; they’re going
to be playing at a high level because that’s just the way
they are. They’re extremely well-coached from top to
Q. You’ve always prided yourself on playing the right
way. You still have those moments like the fourth
quarter against Denver in the close-out game where
you’re like, this is going to end now and you go to that
place. Jimmy parallels you in that regard in that he
doesn’t want to have the ball in his hands every
possession; he wants to get other guys involved. And
then you saw last night what he ends up doing. Are
you in that space yet where you think you might have
to go that tack to close this thing out and go to that
fourth-quarter-Bron-against-Denver mode, like we’ve
seen so many times from you in the past? Or are you
not there yet?
LeBRON JAMES: I’ve never predetermined my game plan
throughout my whole career. I’ve never gone into a game
saying, okay, I need to score 40 tonight, I need to dominate
in the scoring facet, things of that nature, I need to make
big shots. I’ve never predetermined my game. Throughout
my whole life, I’ve never done that. One thing I’ve always
been, I’ve always been prepared. If you’re prepared, then
whatever the game — however the course happens, you’re
able to make adjustments throughout the game and you’re
able to impact the game because you’re prepared and
you’ve put in the work. It’s just that simple for me.
I think anytime I’ve ever thought about, okay, I’m going to
try to go out and do this, it doesn’t happen that way. The
game has too many things that can happen throughout the
course of the game and throughout the course of a quarter
or possessions here and possessions there where you can
try to plan for it, but audibles happen in the football sense.
The best thing I can tell you is that I’m always prepared
and I know that I’ve put in the work. I trust that.
Q. Early in the pandemic you mentioned that your
body was kind of in shock, that you were rounding
toward third base for the playoffs and then you had to
stop. All these months later, how would you say your
body has responded to all that?
LeBRON JAMES: I’m in great shape. I bounce back
extremely well in between games. I could play right now if
we had to play right now, at a high level.
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NBA Finals: Lakers vs. Heat