LeBron James: The Warriors have championship DNA, and we do as well

Posted at 1:38 AM, Jun 10, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-10 01:38:33-04

Read the full text from LeBron James' post-game press conference:


Q. Just wondering if you could take us through kind of what was going through your head and how the play developed, the one where you went off the glass yourself.
LEBRON JAMES: I think I was -- it was a transition play, and I believe it was Kyle on my right side that was running the wing, and two of their players were back and I was just trying to engage one of them so I could get Kyle a shot in the corner, and they both went to Kyle, I believe, and I got caught in the air. So that's the only thing I could think of. I didn't want to travel, and Draymond was kind of playing Double T, and Double T kind of had his back towards me, so I just threw it off the glass and went and got it.

Q. The way you guys came out in that first quarter where Tristan is establishing the tone of the game, JR Smith is hitting some big threes, how can you ensure that you bring that same kind of mentality on the road in Oracle and just seeing what you guys were capable of, doing that?
LEBRON JAMES: Well, we're going to watch the film when we get to Golden State, and let's see ways we can be better.  We didn't play our type of game in Game 1 and Game 2.  And if we don't do that, if we play like we played in Game 1 and Game 2 of this series, the series is over. So we have to continue to play how we played at home.  We have to be physically
-- be physical at the point of attack, we got to continue to move the ball, share the ball. And tonight we had 27 assists, and that's very key.

Q. The first three games you guys kind of struggled from beyond the arc, hit 24 tonight. Just how different of a team are you guys when you're just knocking those perimeter shots down?
LEBRON JAMES: That's part of who we are. We set a lot of records since we kind of assembled this team the last couple years. And that's just part of who we are. We got guys that can stretch the floor, make big shots, and they did it tonight, from Ky, Kevin, and Swish, and everybody else chipped in as well.

Q. Did you talk with your teammates before the game and just stress like we're not going out like that, something along those lines?

LEBRON JAMES: Well, I didn't hear it, but some of the other guys heard it and told me that that they wanted to celebrate on our floor once again and they wanted to spray champagne in our locker rooms, and I think it came from Draymond, which is okay, that's Dray anyway.

But so I just told guys, I didn't stress anything besides just live in the moment.  Live in the moment.  We have a great opportunity to give ourself another opportunity to keep going. We played well in Game 3, well enough to win, and we just didn't do it.  But tonight we came out and we stuck to the game plan our coaching staff put together and we -- this was as close to a 48-minute game we played in the post-season. Even in the first couple first three rounds, this was close as -- to a 48- minute game as we played.  It was big for us.

Q. How important is that, that everybody standing out for the game, and also do you finally feel that tonight you guys are who you are?
LEBRON JAMES: Well, I think the last two games we have played Cavaliers basketball. We have been physical, we haven't turned the ball over, and we have shared the ball. In Game 3 we just -- down the stretch we couldn't make any shots, and they did. And that was just -- it's a make-or-miss league at that point.

So in the last couple games we have been playing Cavaliers basketball, and it's resulted in us just playing better and us getting this win tonight.

Q. Kind of looks like déjà vu all over again, you guys going back west down 3-1. Do you have these guys just where you want them?
LEBRON JAMES: No, they got us where they want us. Listen, at the end of the day, we want to just try to put ourself in position to play another game, and we did that tonight and hopefully we can do it Monday night where we can come back here.

So our mindset is try to go up there and get one. Which is probably one of the toughest environments we have in this league, along with our building. And so we look forward to the challenge and the matchup.

Q. 40 more tonight for Kyrie, LeBron, coming off of
the difficult end to Game 3, big performance from him, did you feel that he was going to be able to bounce back in a big way after that tough end to Game 3, and what else did you see from him tonight?
LEBRON JAMES: He's just been very special in closeout games. On both sides.  Us being able to close out a team trying to close out on us. He's just been built for that moment. I said that over and over again, that he's always been built for the biggest moments, and tonight he showed that once again. It's not surprising.  He's just that special.

Q. Whether it's adversity or desperation or intensity, this group, as we have seen it the last couple of years, seems to always respond to it. What is in your guys' makeup that allows you to only have that really come out in these situations? LEBRON JAMES: I don't know.  I don't like it.


It causes too much stress, man.  I'm stressed out. Keep doing this every year. But listen, at the end of the day we just got some resilient guys. The Warriors have championship DNA, and we do as well. We're battle tested, they're battle tested. And getting swept is something that you never want to have happen.
Especially this point. You get all the way to the Finals, you hate to get swept, lose two games on your home floor. So I think a lot of guys had that in their mind today, and they came out and played like it.

Q. Physically, are you okay? We saw you getting some treatment after the game.
LEBRON JAMES: I'll be all right on Monday. I'll be all right on Monday.

Q. Couple of years back, obviously, Andy was kind of that spark plug energy-wise. How different is it now when Tristan can play the game that he was able to play tonight versus last three games, from just a collective team-wide energy standpoint? LEBRON JAMES: He's a big piece of our puzzle. We all know that. He's been huge for our success the last three years, and they did a -- they have done a great job of putting him in the game plan and neutralizing what he does best, and that's offensive rebound and giving us extra possessions. And it's been very tough on him in this Finals so far. But he didn't get down on himself. He came through when we needed him the most, and that was tonight, getting 10 rebounds and also dishing out five assists.  So that was big time.

Q. He's a professional, but you've referred to him before as your little brother. Have you had any talks with him over the last three games after any
sort of frustration or struggles in regard to being ready for Game 4?
LEBRON JAMES: Yeah, I have. I'm not here to tell you guys what I've been talking to him about or what I -- but he knows what I expect out of him. Like I said, tonight we needed him the most, and he was there.

Q. After Game 3 being such a letdown, did you have to work into believing that something like tonight was possible? And if you did, when did you get to that point?
LEBRON JAMES: No, I didn't have to work into believing it. At the end of the day I had the same game day ritual. And I slept great last night, came to shootaround, got my work in, I went home, took my usual pregame nap, got up, ate my pregame food, came to work.

I didn't feel anything, actually, I was just excited about the moment. It is what it is. You come to work and you put in the work and you study the game for myself, and you just do everything to put yourself in a position to succeed.

There's no reason to add any more pressure to it. And I'm not saying it was the result of a win, because I've done the same thing for a long time now, but for myself, just being able to just stay even keeled no matter the situation, I think it's good for our ball club.

Q. This game lasted almost three hours and you had a triple double. This game had a little bit of everything. Do you feel as emotionally and mentally drained as you did the last game when you guys lost?
LEBRON JAMES: I'm about there. I'm about there. It lets me know that I did what I was supposed to do when I'm emotionally and physically drained at the end of a Finals game. If I'm not, then I didn't do what I was supposed to do. So that would be two games in a row where I felt like that, and now I got to get my mind ready once again.

Q. The NBA life means a lot of traveling. Do you have a particular routine on the plane? How do you maximize your rest?
LEBRON JAMES: Well, it's quite a long flight going out west, and so we try to get a little bit of sleep.  I try to get a little bit of sleep and then I get up and get treatment on the plane. Just give my body as much treatment as I can on the plane and get a couple hours of rest. Obviously it's going to be probably not too -- it won't be a long -- it won't be easy for me to sleep tonight because I'm still going on with the game and things of that nature, my body is not feeling as great, but I'll be fine tomorrow.
Q. How did your approach to the game and your style of play evolve between the first Final you played in and this one?
LEBRON JAMES: I stunk in the first Finals. I don't stink anymore.

Q. Kyrie was in here and he said that he always is looking at social media. He says he sees everything.  You've talked about a lot of times about how you're past that, you don't listen to critics and everything. Do you talk to your teammates when all of this stuff is kind of floating around about curses and Cavs in seven tweets that kind of go viral on social media about kind of pushing that stuff away?
LEBRON JAMES: No, I don't see it. So I can't talk to my teammates about it because I don't see it. Unless one of the guys brings it to me, either as a joke or something they want me to see, but I don't -- it don't go
-- I don't have notifications on my phone. I don't have none of the apps on my phone right now so I can't even like click on it and accidentally click on it. I don't get involved in that, man. Because I'm like, I know, like I'm like every other mention when I play. And I don't -- I don't like it because people just be talking like -- people talk crazy, man. I'm going to leave it at that. So I know better.

Q. Tonight's game was so physical, and also dramatic. How do you guys make it to focus on basketball and not to be distracted and especially keep the lead?
LEBRON JAMES: At the end of the day the game is supposed to be played physically. Both teams were wanting to put themselves in the record books and put themselves in basketball history. So try to do whatever it takes to win.  I think both teams definitely are trying to do that from game to game.

Q. Just your reaction to that first quarter, first half, both record setting. I mean, you came within a free throw of 50 for a quarter and 80 whatever it was at half.  Did you have a minute to think about what was going on?
LEBRON JAMES: No.  You can't.  First of all, if you take a minute to see what's going on versus this team, they hit you with a 50-point quarter. There's no -- you can't -- we were just playing in the moment. We're just playing good basketball. We were in attack mode, and it results in us having 49.  The reason we didn't hit 50 is because I can't shoot a free throw. So, but I'll be better in Game 5.