Dwyane Wade

Sixers-Cavaliers observations: No match for kings of the East

Sixers-Cavaliers observations: No match for kings of the East


LeBron James took the steam out of any anticipation of a matchup between him and Ben Simmons in a matter of minutes in the Cavaliers’ 113-91 win over the Sixers on Monday.

Simmons began the night defending James and ended it leaving the game late in the fourth with a right ankle sprain. Postgame X-rays came back negative and Simmons will be reevaluated Tuesday morning.

James scored 15 — yes, 15 — points in the first seven minutes of the game. He drove the basket early on and set the tone that he was going to attack often. 

James has a good relationship with Simmons, who considers James like an older brother through being represented by the same agency. However, there was no way he was going to go easy on the rookie. 

James made 30 points, 13 rebounds and six assists look easy in 31 minutes. 

Simmons, who attempted just 11 shots, had a quiet night with 10 points, eight rebounds and only two rebounds (see story). He entered the game averaging nearly eight dimes. Simmons did not get to the free throw line and went scoreless in the third. 

The loss snapped the Sixers’ win streak at three and dropped their record to 11-8. Meanwhile, the streaking Cavs (13-7) ran their win streak to eight straight.

• The Sixers didn’t do themselves any favors with their long-range woes: 3 for 28 (10.7 percent). They shot 0 for 11 from three in the first half and did not drain a trey until over four minutes into the third quarter. Robert Covington, who entered the game shooting 46.2 percent from long range, went 0 for 9 (more on why here).

• In a flashback to their days with the Heat, James (22) and Dwyane Wade (12) combined for 34 of the Cavs’ 53 points in the first half. No one else on the Cavs had more than six points through that point. 

• Joel Embiid said my turn in the third. He exploded for 16 points in 11 minutes after scoring 12 total in the first half. Embiid was an efficient 5 for 6 from the field and much more aggressive getting to the line (6 for 7) during the quarter. He matched James’ scoring total with 30 points and 11 rebounds in 33 minutes (see highlights).

• The game got out of the Sixers’ control in the fourth. They trailed by just three, 72-69, with 3:06 to play in the third. Fast-forward to the final quarter and they were down by as many as 29 points. 

• The Sixers had reached 100-plus points in their previous 14 games. The last time they scored in double digits was Oct. 23 against the Pistons, their fourth game of the season. 

• The Cavs’ bench outscored the Sixers’ bench, 57-30. Wade (15), Jeff Green (14) and Channing Frye (12) led Cleveland's reserves. 

• Injury update: Justin Anderson (left leg), Markelle Fultz (right shoulder) and Nik Stauskas (right ankle) did not play for the Sixers. Derrick Rose (left ankle), Isaiah Thomas (right hip) and Tristan Thompson (left calf) were sidelined for the Cavs. 

• Eagles LeGarrette Blount and Malcolm Jenkins rang the ceremonial bell pregame. Blount sat courtside across from the Cavs’ bench where Thomas, dressed in an Allen Iverson shirt, watched the game. Before they were on the Eagles and Cavs, Blount and Thomas were friends from their time with the Patriots and Celtics. 

NBA Notes: Dwyane Wade officially signs with Cavaliers

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NBA Notes: Dwyane Wade officially signs with Cavaliers

The wake-up calls for Dwyane Wade were coming at 5:45 a.m. for much of the summer. An hour or so later, he and LeBron James would be in the gym together working on their games.

And the chemistry was as good as ever.

"He drives me to want to be better," Wade said.

They'll be grinding together on a daily basis now.

Wade signed a one-year, $2.3 million deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday to reunite with James, with whom he went to four NBA Finals and won two championships in Miami. Wade's deal was finalized quickly after he cleared waivers, which he had to do after getting a buyout from the Chicago Bulls over the weekend.

"I'm all about the challenge," Wade told The Associated Press. "If I didn't want the challenge, I would have stayed in Chicago. But I wanted the challenge of being back on that big stage and playing in those moments and seeing what I've got. So I'm not going to talk about what I've got. I want to go out there and show, when the lights are the brightest and the games are the biggest, that's when I'm alive. And I need that."

He took a hard look at going back to Miami, listened to sales pitches from Paul George and Carmelo Anthony in Oklahoma City, even considered San Antonio and got a call from Golden State.

But in the end, he wanted to play again with James -- someone Wade calls his brother (see full story).

Grizzlies: Forward Green signs multiyear contract
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Memphis Grizzlies have signed forward JaMychal Green to a multiyear contract.

Terms of the deal haven't been announced.

Green, 27, is coming off the most productive season of his career. The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 8.9 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 27.3 minutes in 77 games with the Grizzlies. He made 75 starts.

He has played 179 games in a three-year NBA career with the San Antonio Spurs and Grizzlies. Green has career averages of 7.4 points and 5.4 rebounds.

Green went undrafted after a four-year career at Alabama. He played professionally in the NBA G League and in France before making his NBA debut with San Antonio in January 2015.

Wizards: Kara Lawson to be primary TV analyst this season
WASHINGTON -- Former WNBA and college basketball star Kara Lawson will be the primary television analyst for the Washington Wizards this season.

Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic announced the hiring of Lawson on Wednesday. A longtime ESPN game and studio analyst, Lawson will continue to contribute on that network along with working Wizards games.

Lawson in 2007 became the first female analyst for a nationally televised NBA game. The 36-year-old is a Washington-area native who went to the Final Four three times at the University of Tennessee and won an Olympic gold medal at the 2008 Olympics.

Phil Chenier, who had Lawson's job the past 33 years, will be a second analyst for some games and do pre- and postgame work. Ex-NBA player Drew Gooden also joins the network for some games.

NBA Notes: Dwyane Wade to reportedly join Cavs, reunite with LeBron James

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NBA Notes: Dwyane Wade to reportedly join Cavs, reunite with LeBron James

CLEVELAND -- Together again: LeBron and D-Wade. Just like old times.

Dwyane Wade has decided to sign with the Cleveland Cavaliers and reunite with LeBron James, a person familiar with the situation told the Associated Press on Tuesday night.

Wade is expected to clear waivers on Wednesday and then join the Cavs, according to the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal cannot be completed until the 12-time All-Star goes through the waiver process.

In Cleveland, Wade will be reunited with James, his close friend, former Miami teammate and a player he confided in before signing with his hometown Chicago Bulls last year.

Wade and James won two NBA titles together during four seasons with the Heat and will now chase another one with the Cavs, who have been revamped after losing to Golden State in last season's Finals.

On Monday, James said he would love to play with Wade again.

"He brings another championship pedigree, championship DNA," James said at Cleveland's media day. "He brings another player to the team who can get guys involved, can make plays and also has a great basketball mind. ... I hope we can bring him here. I would love to have him" (see full story).

Suns: Warren signs 4-year, $50 million extension
PHOENIX -- T.J. Warren has signed a $50 million, four-year contract extension with the Phoenix Suns.

The 6-foot-8 forward, nicknamed "Tony Buckets" by teammates, is entering his fourth NBA season. He averaged career highs of 14.4 points and 5.1 rebounds over 66 games last season. After the All-Star break, he averaged 17.6 points and shot 56 percent from the field.

The team announced the deal Tuesday.

Warren was the 17th overall pick out of North Carolina State in the 2014 draft after earning ACC player of the year honors and breaking the school's season scoring record, set 39 years earlier by David Thompson.

Suns general manager Ryan McDonough says Warren has improved every year and is expected to continue his development as he approaches his prime.

Thunder: GM Presti evolves, surrounds Westbrook with stars
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Sam Presti has evolved with the times.

Oklahoma City's general manager is perhaps best known for drafting Kevin Durant, James Harden and Russell Westbrook. Over the years, instead of adding big-name free agents and making blockbuster trades, he has added relatively inexpensive players around his stars and built through the draft.

His plans have mostly worked. The Thunder have played in the Western Conference Finals four times and the NBA Finals once since Presti took the job in 2007, and both Durant and Westbrook have won MVP awards.

Not everything has been rosy. Presti couldn't work out a contract extension with Harden in 2012. And last year, Durant left Oklahoma City for Golden State. Durant recently criticized Thunder management for failing to put the right players around him to compete for a title.

In a perfectly timed move, Presti shook the NBA by trading for 10-time All-Star Carmelo Anthony. The Thunder already had traded for four-time All-Star Paul George in the offseason. With the addition of the kind of talent Durant so desperately wanted in Oklahoma City, it appears Presti has turned over a new leaf. The man who always has focused on the process has shifted gears and built a super team in a matter of months (see full story).