Before every playoff game, I'll ask the same question to various members of the team. I'll present those answers here in the Center Court blog. Today's question: What is the mindset of the team prior to the start of Game One?
"I’ve quit trying to do that because this group has been a group that has been pretty calm and quiet at times. They’ve shown that they’ve been ready to play. We’ve gone over all the things we need to do for tonight’s game. I’ve quit trying to look at the faces and the body language to get a read on this group. Just focused on the game."
"To be honest, definitely kind of nervous. There’s some people here to haven’t been here and there are some people here that have been anxious to get back here but they don’t know what to expect. That’s all part of it, all part of those butterflies. But as soon as that ball gets tipped I know, I can feel the energy on this team, that we’ll be ready to play.
"We don’t have all our key components, so we have (be confident) for the lack of that. Everybody has to be focused. Our minds have to be right. Our bodies have to be right because we don’t have 15 guys. We have 12. Brandon’s not playing. Joel’s not here. Greg’s not here. We have to, everybody has to step up and they have to go past their comfort zones to contribute and get wins for this team."
We’re pretty loose. We definitely have to be together, especially here on the road. Just try to tune out all the other distractions. We know we’re not going to have Brandon. He’s a big part of what we do around here, so guys have been talking about depending on each other, leaning on each other, encouraging each other, especially when things aren’t going our way at certain points in the ballgame.
I think the team is ready, you know? We don’t be scared because we don’t have Brandon Roy and because the Suns are the hottest team in the West right now. We know it’s going to be a tough game. We know that, but we got some good veteran experience from Juwan, Camby, Andre. All the players step up their games. We good, we good. The last two practices where very good. Now we’re ready to play.