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Pierce, Perkins improving

Posted by Michael Vega, Globe Staff  June 7, 2008 02:15 PM

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Q. Do you think you'll be thinking about the ankle tomorrow?

"I'm not going to worry about it. I'm just going to try to go out there and do what I can, and as I said, I'm going to go all-out, and whatever happens, happens."

Q. Do you think they can match you physically?

"Yeah, I think [Pau] Gasol doesn't get credit for being physical. I think he's all right. He's not soft in my opinion. You know, a lot of people say he's not that physical, but I think he played pretty physical."

Lakers forward Pau Gasol

Q. Is Kendrick Perkins being Utah-style physical or more or less?

"He's maybe a bigger body, but he's also longer, so he loses a little bit of leverage. But he's definitely a force in there and he does a good job being physical and using his body well. So that's been a big plus for them all playoff long, all year long, I think."

Q. Has Phil [Jackson] talked about maybe expecting more touches this game? I think you got 11 shots last game or something like that.

"We talked about it a little bit. We want to make sure we establish a post presence and play inside-out a little bit more. I think that's going to help our offense and hopefully also give me a little more in the lane and being aggressive, and force them to play a little defense on me. I think that should be interesting, hopefully; that would be great."

Lakers coach Phil Jackson

Q. Your comments yesterday about Paul Pierce, have they made it any tougher for you the last couple 24 hours? I've gotten a lot of emails about the comments. Have you heard from Boston fans that made it any more difficult the last 24 hours?

"No, I hope they take that in good stead."


Q. On the same subject, you've been coaching marquee teams for a long time and you've been having your fun all the time that you've been doing it, and you had some consequences like when you said what you said about Sacramento and they showed up with cowbells for about five years after that. Are you surprised how seriously people take everything you say? Do you mean it in more jest than people are picking up?

"Well, we really should have a lot of fun about this; this is sports, after all. These are fun and games. Yeah, I kid the NBA about taking the fun out of the Finals, but this is still fun. We try to make this fun."

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant

Q. How do you see the rivalries today versus the game in the '80s and even the '90s just in terms of hatred?

"You know, I've heard stories in the past of them coming here and not getting room service and stuff like that. I mean, my room service is cool (laughter). You know, I got the nice apple pie with the ice cream on top, รก la mode. I didn't even ask for the ice cream but they hooked me up (laughter).

I've heard just horror stories from the past in the '80s when the guys came here. It's not like that. There's a healthy competition, and they obviously want to win, the city wants to win, but it's not like 'I hate your guts.'"

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