Champ's 2016 Playoff Blog: "Setting the Stage"

James Jones, the Wine and Gold’s sharpshooting reserve has played in 130 postseason games over the course of his 12-year career – winning a pair of NBA titles among his five straight trips to the NBA Finals.

As the Cavaliers try to make it six straight appearances for both Jones – (and the man who called him “my favorite player of all-time,” LeBron James) – Cavs.com asked the savvy vet to share his thoughts throughout this season’s Playoff run …

This is what we’ve played for, worked for all season. Everything that went on during the regular season is in the distant past at this point.

Those 82 games don’t matter when you get to the postseason. In the postseason, you start fresh. And it definitely doesn’t matter once you get to the Finals – because the team that shows up in the Finals is usually nowhere near the team that finished up in April.

Right now, I’m just excited to be here, excited to have an opportunity to go out here and compete for what we ALL want to compete for which is a World Championship.

In terms of the regular season, some might want to focus on the two losses we took to Golden State this season. And you don’t throw them out. There’s something to be gleaned, something to be learned from those losses. But they have no impact on Thursday and the series going forward.

What we did in the past, what they did in the past is irrelevant. At the end of the day, it’s what we do from Thursday forward that really matters.

James Jones

"Going Next Level"

"Staying Sharp"

"Coat of Armor"

"Youth Movement"

A huge reason we’re in the position we’re in to compete on this stage is Tyronn Lue. He gets it. He has a unique perspective that resonates with this team in particular – the makeup of this team.

That’s not to say that there aren’t areas in which he can improve – and he’d be the first one to tell you that. But I think the baseline from where he’s starting from is so great, especially for this group.

He’s able to reach us, he’s able to teach us, he’s able to push us with a unique perspective for an accomplished team like we are. That’s a tough task, but he’s been able to do it seamlessly, he’s able to do it consistently and he’ll continue to do it consistently because that’s just the way he’s built.

Of course it helps that he played the game and he won an NBA title doing it. Experience always helps – whether it’s in the front office, on the court or on the sidelines. Sometimes it’s underrated. Sometimes it’s overrated. But in his case, it’s a great component of his overall balance.

And he won’t rest on that. Coach won’t say: ‘Hey, I’m really good because I played the game.’ He’ll say it gives him a different perspective. He’s a really good coach because he works at coaching – teaching, critiquing, instructing, adjusting. He’s doing it all in an effective manner.

This team was built for where we’re at right now. We have the perfect veteran mix.

This team’s veterans are about winning. There are no egos, no desire for the spotlight; just a collective desire to win for each other – not individually or for personal agendas or personal gain, but for collective gain.

So, to have veteran guys who’ve had the opportunity to win – and who’ve also experienced some severe losses – it’s kind of helped to steel our minds, so that the only thing we care about on game night is doing whatever we can to help the team win.

And now it’s time to win at the highest level.