• Riley said he and James “don’t have heavy conversations … I’m not a hands-on guy anymore with him.”
• He said Erik Spoelstra should be named the NBA Coach of the Year: “He will yell at me for talking about this, but don’t penalize him because he’s got a great team.”
• Last month, when Celtics general manager Danny Ainge said it was “embarrassing” that James was voicing displeasure about hard fouls, Riley said that Ainge should “shut the [expletive] up” and worry about his own team.
Asked about that Friday, Riley said: “At 211 degrees, water’s just hot. At 212, it boils and creates steam. … That’s sort of what happened. … Somebody on the outside weighing in, I don’t think that’s right in this league. There are too many people in the league that weigh in on other people’s business.”
• On hard fouls, Riley said the Heat “interacts with the league office when we feel like it’s getting out of hand. LeBron has battled that for so long that he’ll deal with it. We have to try to protect him. If you hit him harder and harder, you’re making a huge mistake.”
• Riley said Spoelstra often implored him to sign Chris Andersen before Miami did in January.
“If I got another text from Erik about trying to get Chris Andersen, I was going to put my hands around his neck,” Riley said. “That’s a Spo addiction the past two years with me. Spo knows exactly what he needs. Chris is the perfect complement to how they want to play, the energy he brings.”
• He said he never discussed the 27-game winning streak with Spoelstra and “stayed away from the team” during it. “I was really disappointed when we got beat. I wanted them to break the record. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime phenomenon. I thought we were going to get it done.”
• On Brandon Jennings predicting the Bucks would win the series against the Heat in six games: “What anybody says doesn’t mean anything.”
• Riley cracked: “I’m tired of watching Homeland 35 times. I’m ready to get on to the playoffs. … Our team has a deep belief.”