LeBron James found the final seconds of Miami’s loss to Houston painful. It was a complete contrast with just the night before.
First on Tuesday night there was the play above — with 15 seconds left in the game and the Rockets up three James Harden tried to make an ill-advised pass ahead to Dwight Howard in the front court (the Heat were forced to foul and you pass to Howard?). The result was a turnover, but in the fight for the ball Howard inadvertently elbowed LeBron in he face. I don’t care what color mask he’s wearing, that is going to hurt if your nose is broken. That’s what he told the Miami Herald.
“It feels like my nose is broken,” James joked after the game.
There had been a report on twitter that LeBron had re-broken his nose on that play, but that is not the case according to the team.
With the turnover Miami got a final shot, and you knew LeBron would take it. During the play Howard got switched on to LeBron after a screen — but that worked for Houston. LeBron could have driven by Howard for a lay up, but LeBron needed a three, and Howard is mobile and long and was able to contest the shot, a 25-foot three that did not fall. Again from the Herald:
“I felt like I had a good look. It was just a little long,” James said.
LeBron had 22 points on the night on 9-of-18 shooting, but was scoreless in the fourth quarter.
The Cavs are shorthanded in the backcourt right now, with Kyrie Irving still out and Iman Shumpert sidelined for up to three months. Yahoo’s Marc Spears reports that they’re bringing in former Temple guard Dionte Christmas, who played for the Suns in 2013-14:
In 31 games for the Suns two seasons ago, Christmas averaged 2.3 points and 1.2 rebounds in 6.4 minutes per game. He probably won’t get very many minutes if he makes the Cavs’ final roster, but there’s a chance they’ll keep him around on a non-guaranteed deal until Irving and Shumpert are healthy, just to have another body in the backcourt.
LeBron James sat out the Cavs’ preseason game against the Sixers on Thursday night, but Cleveland still held the lead for all but the final 5.4 seconds. Then, Sixers rookie Scottie Wilbekin did this:
Wilbekin, who played college ball at Florida, has a chance to earn legitimate minutes for the Sixers this season as they try to find young talent on the cheap. This is a good start.