Heat Bobcats Basketball

Dwyane Wade suspended one game for kicking Ramon Sessions in the groin


Dwyane Wade has been suspended one game without pay for his kick to the groin of Ramon Sessions on Wednesday, the league announced via official release.

The league was more generous in describing Wade’s actions, saying the suspension was “for flailing his leg and making contact with the groin of” Sessions.

But let’s be honest here — Wade kicked Sessions where it counts, and it was absolutely intentional.

If you have any doubts, just watch the play unfold in slow motion. No way that was a necessary move that was forced by the initial contact, and the league rightfully saw it for what it was.

Miami pulled away late to hand Charlotte its 16th consecutive loss, but this was just a four-point game when this went down with 8:12 remaining in the fourth quarter. The frustration Wade might have felt given the score and situation may have also played into the way he was punished.

Wade will miss the Heat’s next game, which takes place against the Pistons in Detroit on Friday.

James Harden: “I am the best player in the league. I believe that.”

James Harden, Stephen Curry
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James Harden was the MVP last season — if you ask his fellow NBA players.

The traditional award (based on a media vote) went to Stephen Curry (in the closest vote in four years), and that was the right call (in my mind). But from the time it happened Harden did not buy it. And he still doesn’t buy it. In the least — and he’s using that as fuel for this season. That’s what he told Fran Blinebury over at NBA.com.

“I am the best player in the league. I believe that,” he said. “I thought I was last year, too.”

Well, it’s a more realistic claim than Paul George’s.

“But that award means most valuable to your team. We finished second in the West, which nobody thought we were going to do at the beginning of the year even when everybody was healthy. We were near the top in having the most injuries. We won our division in a division where every single team made the playoffs.

“There’s so many factors. I led the league in total points scored, minutes played. Like I said, I’m not taking anything away from Steph, but I felt I deserved the Most Valuable Player. That stays with me.”

That’s very Kobe Bryant of you to turn that into fuel. Defining the MVP Award is an annual discussion that nobody agrees on.

I could get into how Harden was the old-school, traditional stats MVP, how that ignores how Steve Kerr used Curry, and how that opened up the Warriors’ offense to championship levels. Curry put up numbers, but he was also the distraction, the bright star that Kerr used to open up looks for Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and others. Curry’s strength was not just what he did with the ball in his hands, but his gravity to draw defenders even when he didn’t. Did the Warriors stay healthier than the Rockets? No doubt. Should Curry be penalized for that?

It’s simple for Harden — if he can put up those numbers again, if he can be the fulcrum of a top offense, he will be in the discussion for MVP again. And, if he can lead the Rockets beyond the conference finals, nobody will talk about that MVP snub anyway.