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Spurs' Green: LeBron 'kind of stopped himself'

The SportsXchange

Dejected but focused following a lopsided loss in San Antonio, LeBron James said Tuesday night that he just has to be better in Game 4.

Spurs' guard Danny Green said Wednesday that the credit being heaped on his team for keeping the NBA MVP in check might be misdirected.

"We've done a great job helping each other on team defense," Green said. "But obviously we know what kind of player LeBron is. We know he's not at his best right now. He missed a lot of shots he normally makes. We're sure in Game 4 he's going to come out a lot different. LeBron is not just us stopping him. He's kind of stopped himself out there and we're getting a little lucky."

Green, the leading scorer in the NBA Finals through three games, shared defensive responsibility on James with Kawhi Leonard and others, containing James to a 15-point night on 7-of-21 shooting.

Coach Gregg Popovich downplayed the idea that the Spurs' tactical moves have given them an edge over James, and that "we haven't stopped anybody."

Green agreed.

"Obviously we're making it tough for him. But you guys have seen him all year at his best, and how he can perform," Green said. "Obviously he's not doing that right now. I don't know what it is."

The Spurs might be easier to contain if point guard Tony Parker, San Antonio's MVP candidate, is limited by a grade 1 hamstring strain. Parker said Wednesday that he'd wait until gameday to determine his status for Game 4.

"The MRI just confirmed what I felt was a strain, and I was just hoping it was not a tear or a defect. So the good news it's not a tear," Parker said. "It's not a defect. So that's the good news. Now I just have to see how I'm going to feel (Thursday)."

Parker had ankle and calf problems in recent weeks, but called the hamstring injury "something new for me."

He'll conference with Popovich Thursday afternoon without feeling pressure to take the court.

"I don't feel pressure. I just talk with Pop and we'll make a decision," he said.
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