LeBron, Wade say fatigue was a factor in Game 1 loss to Spurs

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The Heat had to play seven hard-fought games against the Pacers to reach the championship round. The Spurs, meanwhile, had 10 days to rest after taking care of the Grizzlies in just four games in the Western Conference Finals.

After a rough fourth quarter for Miami led to San Antonio taking Game 1 on the Heat’s home floor, both LeBron James and Dwyane Wade said afterward that fatigue was a factor for their team down the stretch.

“The fourth quarter was the difference,” James said. “I can see it on a few of our guys’ faces. Felt a little fatigued, still a little banged up from that seven‑game series. They looked like they were rested in the fourth quarter. They took advantage of that.”

“Obviously I thought that we were a little fatigued, honestly, in the fourth quarter, looking around,” Wade said. “We looked like a team that came off a seven‑game series.”

James and Wade aren’t into making excuses after a loss; they were simply telling it as they saw it during the game’s final 12 minutes. And the numbers back up what they had to say.

Over the first three quarters of the game, Miami was shooting better than 48 percent from the field, and had committed a total of just four turnovers during that span. In the fourth quarter alone, the Heat shot just 27.8 percent (5-of-18) and turned it over five times.

In fact, James uncharacteristically asked for some rest to start the fourth, which had him and Wade sitting on the bench at the same time.

“I told him I needed one,” James said, when asked why head coach Erik Spoelstra chose to rest him to start the period. “At that point I had played the whole third. I had been accustomed to being able to start the fourth. But the third quarter was so — I was in the paint, defensive rebounding, I was closing out Kawhi Leonard on shooters. It took all in the tank from me in the third quarter. So I needed a little breather.”

The fatigue isn’t going to go away for the Heat in this series, and even though it wasn’t anywhere near the main reason they lost to a team far more rested, it was clearly a factor that showed some measurable results.

Watch James Harden do the #DriveByDunkChallenge from a speed boat (VIDEO)

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The #DriveByDunkChallenge has been a fun distraction this summer. If you don’t know what it is, it essentially involves NBA players jumping out of their cars to dunk on regular folks on community basketball hoops.

Players like Boston Celtics wing Jaylen Brown have led the charge in the social media video fad, and now it appears that Houston Rockets guard James Harden is setting a new trend.

That trend? Doing the #DriveByDunkChallenge from dang boat.

Yup, seriously.

Via Twitter:

I can’t think of anything more baller than dunking on somebody from a speed boat, so congrats to Harden for winning the NBA offseason.

Photoshop no more: here’s Gordon Hayward in a Boston Celtics uniform (PHOTO)

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I suppose it will take some time to get used to seeing Gordon Hayward in a Boston Celtics jersey. This photo is the first step on that journey.

In a photo posted to Hayward’s Instagram on Wednesday, many of us got our first look at the former Utah Jazz forward in his new digs.

Specifically, the new Celtics Nike jersey in green with the GE patch on the left shoulder.

Via Instagram:

🍀🔥

A post shared by @gdhayward on

There are still some serious doubts about whether the Celtics will be able to unseat the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference, but perhaps they won’t need to wait for long. Rumors are starting to trickle in about LeBron James leaving Ohio, so maybe by the time we are used to seeing Hayward in Celtics green next season they will have less competition out east.

Dikembe Mutombo says he is putting together a group to buy the Rockets

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It appears as though Houston billionaire Dan Friedkin will have some competition if he decides to bid for the Rockets. Namely, former NBA big man Dikembe Mutombo.

Mutombo played in the NBA from 1991-2009, ending his career with five seasons in Houston. The franchise apparently made an impact on the Hall of Fame center, as he is apparently looking to buy the franchise per an interview with USA Today.

Speaking with Adi Joseph over at FTW, Mutombo would not give out names of his partners but said that he will be able to make a bid in the coming weeks.

Via FTW:

“I’m putting together a group to buy the Houston Rockets, and we’re getting close,” he said. “Getting close in the next couple weeks, maybe I’ll have a chance. Lot of people, lot of people and good people with a lot of money.”

With Leslie Alexander’s decision to sell the team, it certainly would be interesting to get another NBA player as part of team ownership in this league.

Watch the 10 best 360 plays from last season (video)

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The NBA’s top-10 highlight packages have been pretty enjoyable. This one is oddly specific – but still dizzyingly fun.