We’re about one-third (give or take a few games) of the way through the NBA season, so it’s about time we examine the growing plight of the poor Miami Heat. Specifically, Dwyane Wade’s one-game suspension (after his supposedly-inadvertent-but-in-reality-totally-intentional-crotch-shot on Ramon Sessions) and certain privileges opponents are granted when playing against them. From Brian Windhorst:
The Heat said they disagreed with the suspension and further complained about how their players have been being treated by opposing teams recently. Wade, the Heat said, is one of the players the opposition “takes privileges with.” They said they had “made their feelings known to the league office.”
The Heat referred to Wade’s 10-year record as being “an exemplary player and positive influence” in their dispute of the ruling. The league does not typically explain disciplinary decisions but has reviewed several Wade fouls and actions over the last few seasons without taking further action.
Head coach Erik Spoelstra spoke with reporters today in Detroit, expanding on the notion of those “privileges”, which seemingly came to a head in Wednesday’s game against the Charlotte Bobcats:
“That was a very physical game; there were a lot of hard hits in that game,” Spoelstra told reporters in Detroit. “What we’re getting tired of as an organization are the hits, particularly to Dwyane and LeBron and Chris (Bosh). That is the game plan against us.”
You know who else is probably “making their feelings known” to the league office about privilege? Twenty-nine other NBA teams who just watched LeBron James go more than a fortnight without
being whistled for a committing a personal foul. In fact, many would probably view such freedom as the ultimate privilege, basketball-wise. Needless to say, Miami’s claims of opponent privilege is disingenuous, at best.
As for Wade’s supposed choir boy record, thanks to the YouTube era, many player traits that were long whispered about around the league have slowly been confirmed — Kevin Garnett’s Fake Tough Guy persona, for example — yet most don’t require any sort of punishment (unless constant ridicule on blogs counts as punishment). In Wade’s case, he’s well-known in NBA circles as a cheap shot artist, and it appears the law finally caught up to his antics.
Let the record show that the Heat did respond on their official Facebook page regarding Wade’s suspension with the following statement:
While we accept the decision of the NBA regarding Dwyane Wade, we do not agree with it. In his 10 years in the league, Dwyane has never been suspended, and has been an exemplary player and positive influence to his teammates and fans and we have been honored to have him as part of the Miami HEAT family. Unfortunately, he is the type of player, along with other players on our roster, that defenses take privileges with. We stand with Dwyane and support him in this situation and have made our feelings known to the league office.