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NBA FINALS: WARRIORS VS. RAPTORS

June 4, 2019

Kawhi Leonard

Oakland, California - Practice Day

Q. Can you explain what it was like when Nick proposed the box-and-one to you guys for the first time in the timeout and how you guys embraced that new way to go and how it worked?
KAWHI LEONARD: At that time you're just listening to the coach and trying to win the game. So, well, myself, I will just speak for myself, I just went out there and tried to execute. At times coming back in transition on the floor we forgot that we were in it, but we just kind of talked it out and still got into our locations.

Q. Do you think it can work in stretches for the rest of the series?
KAWHI LEONARD: Probably not. Klay definitely wasn't on the floor at that time. There's no telling when KD's going to come back either. So I don't think it will work.

Q. You're undoubtedly are aware that was there a suit filed yesterday against Nike. I know you probably can't talk about specifics of it, but were you comfortable with that being filed during The Finals? And you have this amazing knack for seeming to always be able to block out distraction. How do you develop such a knack?
KAWHI LEONARD: I mean, it happened a long time ago. It's probably you guys are just finding out. But it's not a big worry of mine.

Q. What does it say about your head coach that he's willing to try an unusual defense in the fourth quarter of a Finals game? And can you think of some other examples this year where he's maybe done something a little surprising strategically?
KAWHI LEONARD: I guess a guy that thinks outside the box. He coached at a lot of different levels, seen a lot of different games, coached a lot of NBA games. I really can't remember right now just on the spot of what he has done, but that's just how he is. He is experimental, and a lot of times what he draws up on the board works.

Q. I asked Klay this. I'm curious how does a NBA player decide what pain is acceptable to play through and what type of pain you need to sit out from. How do you sort of draw the line? Because everybody's hurt, everybody's beat up at this point of the season. How do you make that decision?
KAWHI LEONARD: Right now, it's a possible five games left and about 12 days. If you can't run, then you're not going to be able to play. That's how you pretty much measure things at this time. That's all I could really say. If you can't run, you definitely cannot play. Just see how it goes in the first quarter. Did it get worse or not? You might be able to start the game off running, but then you might not be able to finish as good as you started just from fatigue and whatever is bothering you at that time.

Q. Can you describe your thoughts on the job Toronto did managing your load during the season to allow you to play 40 minutes a game and be dominant in these playoffs? And we have seen you limp a few times. Are you fully 100 percent, or are you slightly compromised?
KAWHI LEONARD: A hundred percent. I'm on the floor. There are no excuses. Everybody knows everyone's banged up, bruised up at this moment.

Pretty much, you heard it before, coming into the season I wasn't feeling healthy. Still was trying to get back to my old self. They saw it. They felt that seeing pictures of my body. We pretty much just laid out the schedule and went from there. Just pretty much laid out a schedule, went game by game, see did things get worse or get better and then just keep attacking each day.

Q. To follow up on a question that was asked earlier, how are you able to sort of process and block out distractions in the course of a game, and is that something that you worked on over the course of your career? Is that just your personality?
KAWHI LEONARD: I think it just comes natural, just by all NBA players. There are just so much distractions from you playing in high school to college and now becoming a pro. So it's probably just pretty much second nature at this point. And like I said, I know about this way before even the playoffs started, so it's nothing new to me.

Q. The Warriors changed the matchup in the Game 2 second half. Klay was on you. How much did you enjoy the challenge?
KAWHI LEONARD: It's fun. Been knowing Klay for a long time, just living in California. I just go out and play still. I'm not just playing against him at the moment. They switch a lot. They're a great defensive team, and just try to take the challenge.

Q. I was talking to Boogie earlier about his rehab process through his injuries. He's obviously been on multiple teams. How much variance is there from team to team in terms of what the training staff is like and the types of treatment that you receive?
KAWHI LEONARD: It's just like me and anybody walking outside or whoever, whatever person you're talking to, everyone is different. They're going to see the world different, life different. That's pretty much how it is. From going from one place to another, it's totally different people.

THE MODERATOR: Thank you, Kawhi.

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