Did Fans Burn Down LeBron’s House? Get The Truth Read More: Did Fans Burn Down LeBron’s House? Get The Truth |



When LeBron James told Sports Illustrated’s Lee Jenkins that he was returning to Cleveland, the sports world has been turned upside down. Every Cavs fans is rejoicing like the Messiah suddenly reappeared, while Miami fans are taking the news pretty hard. Monster even wrote a blog about how some Heat fans have been busy burning LeBron jerseys, much like Cleveland fans did four years ago.

One rumor that is starting to gain some steam is that fans burned James’ house down to the ground. The story was posted by the website, CreamBMP, which specializes in writing comedy and satire articles. However, since most people do not go to the bottom of a website to learn about this, they instead share it on social media so it can spread like a wild fire (pardon the pun). The story is hilarious, since some sports fans would probably go to that extreme in order to get revenge on The King. The truth is, James’ $9 million mansion in South Beach is just fine, but it will probably be put up for sale soon.

Read More: Did Fans Burn Down LeBron’s House? Get The Truth |

The Pitch – Chicago Bulls

CHICAGO — Joakim Noah had better get used to seeing Cleveland a lot more in the spring again.

The Bulls always knew they were going to have to get past LeBron James in order to win a championship. Now they’ll just have to do it by going through Cleveland the next few years.

[+] EnlargeLeBron James and Joakim Noah

Rob Grabowski/USA TODAY SportsJoakim Noah will have to deal with LeBron James a lot more now that he is returning to the Cavaliers.

With James’ decision to return to the Cavaliers, the Bulls must hope against hope that Carmelo Anthony will turn down almost $60 million in guaranteed money from the New York Knicks, or find some way to work out a sign-and-trade. The Bulls got encouraging news in the aftermath of James’ announcement, when sources toldESPN’s Stephen A. Smith that Anthony had eliminated the Lakers and is deciding between the Bulls and Knicks.

If the Bulls don’t land Anthony, they are looking at the very real possibility of heading into next season as the third-best team in their own division. James’ choice makes the Cavaliers the new favorite in the Central. TheIndiana Pacers, despite all their dysfunction at the end of the season, still have Paul George and a core that has been to the Eastern Conference finals the past couple of seasons.

If Lance Stephenson decides to sign elsewhere, that will change the dynamic within the division, but it won’t change the fact that James’ presence in Cleveland remains the biggest roadblock facing the Bulls.

James’ decision has other ramifications on the Bulls — namely, the backup plan of trying to acquire Kevin Love from the Minnesota Timberwolves. Sources told’s Marc Steinthat Love is “intrigued” by the possibility of playing with James, and would be open to signing a long-term deal with the Cavs.

If the Bulls don’t land Anthony, the next best option is to continue calling Timberwolves president and coach Flip Saunders to see if they could work a deal to bring Love to Chicago.

The Bulls’ offer figured to include Jimmy ButlerTaj Gibson and/or Nikola Mirotic along with a future draft pick or two. If the Cavaliers offer Andrew Wiggins, the first overall pick in last month’s draft, along with a few other assets, will that be too good of a deal for the Timberwolves to pass up? Gibson and Butler are great defenders and solid players, but they don’t have the potential star power of Wiggins.

No matter what happens in the coming days in free agency, the Bulls know that James remains in their path more than ever. Like it did in Miami during his first season there, it’s going to take him some time to learn the intricacies of playing with new teammates likeKyrie Irving and company, but James is the type of player who makes everyone around him better.

The Bulls have the same kind of talent in Derrick Rose — a player who opens up space for everyone else on the floor — but Rose has played in only 49 games in the past three seasons because of various injuries. James’ move doesn’t change much in that regard. Rose must continue to work on his game and hope his body can withstand the grind of a long NBA season. Until he can prove that he is healthy — and playing at the same level — it’s foolish to believe the Bulls are a serious contender to win a championship. Even if Anthony signs in Chicago, the Bulls still need an elite-level Rose to be a serious title contender.

The key for the Bulls becomes simple now. They must hope that Anthony signs with them, which would give them the superstar scorer they’ve been missing throughout the Tom Thibodeau era.

Anthony’s presence would take a lot of pressure off Rose and the rest of the team, and it would be an antidote for the intense defense James has played against Rose in the past. The Bulls have to hope that Anthony remembers what their pitch was — that Chicago offers him the best chance to win right away.

The Knicks can offer the most money, but they are still selling hope. Anthony must buy into the notion that the Knicks’ new kingpin, Phil Jackson, can turn around the roster in summer 2015, when he’ll be working with a lot more cap space.

The Bulls have to hold onto the belief that Anthony knows that the best way to get through Cleveland and to a championship is to join forces with Rose and Noah. The reality for all parties is that they are much better equipped to do that together, not apart.


LeBron James is heading back to Cleveland.

The four-time league MVP told on Friday that he is returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Sources told ESPN The Magazine’s Chris Broussard the deal is expected to be four years for the maximum of $88 million.



“My relationship with Northeast Ohio is bigger than basketball,” James told in a first-person essay. “I didn’t realize that four years ago. I do now.”

For James, it marks a complete turnaround from his original free-agent decision in 2010, when he bolted Cleveland for the Miami Heat, creating a Big Three with Dwyane Wade and Chris Boshthat went on to win two NBA titles in their four years together.

“The hardest thing to leave is what I built with those guys,” James said. “I’ve talked to some of them and will talk to others. Nothing will ever change what we accomplished.”

James informed Wade of his decision, sources told’s Brian Windhorst. Bosh, who is out of the country, was informed through his agent, sources said.



The Heat were in the mix for James again this time around. Team president Pat Riley traveled to Las Vegas to meet with James on Wednesday in an attempt to lure him back to Miami after the All-Star opted out of his contract following the team’s NBA Finals loss to the San Antonio Spurs.

But James said no to Riley and the Heat, instead choosing a Cleveland team that picked him No. 1 overall in the 2003 draft out of St. Vincent-St. Mary, where he starred as a high school player in his native Akron, Ohio.

“Before anyone ever cared where I would play basketball, I was a kid from Northeast Ohio. It’s where I walked,” James told “It’s where I ran. It’s where I cried. It’s where I bled. It holds a special place in my heart. People there have seen me grow up. I sometimes feel like I’m their son. Their passion can be overwhelming. But it drives me. I want to give them hope when I can. I want to inspire them when I can.”



James spoke with Heat president Pat Riley and owner Micky Arison Friday morning on the phone before James’ first-person essay was posted, sources said. reported incorrectly earlier that the Heat did not know of the decision until it was posted and were not expecting it. The Heat had left their meeting with James earlier this week in Las Vegas feeling good about their chances to retain him, even if it was on a short-term deal.

“I’m not having a press conference or a party,” James said in his essay. “After this, it’s time to get to work.”

The decision certainly was cause for celebration in Cleveland, however. The Cavaliers have been mired in four losing seasons since their trip to the Eastern Conference semifinals in 2010, James’ last year with the team.

Cleveland Browns QB Johnny Manziel was one of many fans expressing excitement on social media after receiving the news.


Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski, who saw James earlier this week at the LeBron James Skills Academy basketball camp, also commented.

“LeBron has a huge heart,” Krzyzewski told’s Andy Katz. “This decision is a great decision for him because he’s following his heart and he loves his home.”

Nike, James’ biggest endorser, released a statement that said: “Like basketball fans around the globe, we are excited to support one of the world’s greatest athletes as he enters the next chapter of his career. We look forward to seeing LeBron step back on the court in Cleveland.”

In the days leading up to LeBron’s decision, much was made of the infamous letter that Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert had issued in the wake of James’ departure in 2010, calling James a “coward” for leaving. James addressed the letter in his essay.

“I’ve met with Dan, face-to-face, man-to-man. We’ve talked it out,” James said. “Everybody makes mistakes. I’ve made mistakes as well. Who am I to hold a grudge?”

Gilbert weighed in himself on Twitter minutes after James’ announcement.


“I’m thrilled with the news,” new Cavaliers coach David Blatt told’s Jeff Goodman. “It’s exciting for the team, the state and for basketball. Life is full of surprises.”

Reaction to James’ decision was decidedly different in Miami than in Cleveland. Arison expressed disappointment on Twitter shortly after James’ announcement.


James, Bosh and Wade all exercised options in their contracts to become free agents this summer, but the thinking was that they would redo their deals to give the team financial flexibility in an effort to upgrade the roster.

Now, the future is uncertain in Miami. Sources confirmed to that Bosh is finalizing an agreement to return to the Heat on a five-year, $118 million deal after weighing a maximum-contract offer from  the Houston Rockets. The team also is making a push to re-sign Wade. Aside from Bosh and Wade, the Heat currently have just four players who will be under guaranteed contract for next season.

James has spoken with former Heat teammate and free-agent forward Mike Miller about joining him in Cleveland, a source told’s Brian Windhorst.




James spent seven seasons with the Cavaliers, averaging 27.8 points, 7.2 rebounds and 6.9 assists and leading them in 2007 to the NBA Finals, where they lost to the Spurs. The goal for him now will be to get there again with a Cleveland team that boasts All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving and former Kansas star Andrew Wiggins, the No. 1 pick in last month’s NBA draft.

Of Irving and James, Krzyzewski told Katz: “That will be a great, great duo … LeBron is a brilliant player and Kyrie is really smart, two players with great knowledge of the game and understanding of the game.”

James said he knows how hard it is to win a championship and that he is “realistic” about the team’s hopes next season — but optimistic.

“My patience will get tested. I know that,” James said. “I’m going into a situation with a young team and a new coach. I will be the old head. But I get a thrill out of bringing a group together and helping them reach a place they didn’t know they could go. I see myself as a mentor now and I’m excited to lead some of these talented young guys.”

Las Vegas sports books quickly adjusted their odds to win the 2015 championship. The Las Vegas Superbook made the Cavs the outright favorites at 3-1, while dropping the Heat’s odds all the way down to 100-1. The MGM moved the Cavs down to 7-2, co-favorites with the Spurs. William Hill and the Wynn sports books both moved the Cavs to 9-2.

Two months ago, the Cavaliers could be found as high as 60-1 to win the title, but money poured in over the last three weeks after James opted out of his contract with Miami. While the majority of wagers were small in size, the MGM, Nevada’s largest sports book, told that it took a $1,000 bet on the Cavs at 40-1. Sports book operator CG Technology said it took “some higher dollar amounts from respected guys” on the Cavs at 30-1.’s Darren Rovell reported that the Cavaliers have confirmed they are not raising season-ticket prices in the wake of the news. The team sold $1 million in ticket sales on Wednesday on speculation alone, a source told Rovell.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

NBA Free Agent race for a better year

The 2014 free-agency period hasn’t had the fireworks or instant gratification of past years, as it seems like every major player and team is waiting to see whatLeBron James will do and the domino effect that will have on the market.

In some ways, James will set the market for everyone else because his choice can change the landscape of the league. While we know that James is absolutely worth the max and that his price won’t change unless he decides to take less, the future of multiple teams and marquee players can be impacted by his decision.

Even with that being the case, we can reasonably predict the price range and set the market for the remaining 2014 free agents based on what we’ve seen so far. Jodie Meeks signing with the Detroit Pistons for more than the mid-level exception certainly set a market for shooters, and Kyle Lowry’s deal worth $12 million a season established the price range for near-max unrestricted free agents. 

Using the salaries of players already signed and existing contracts throughout the league, let’s set the market for the best remaining 2014 free agents according to category of player. 

It’s important to remember that all max contracts are not created equal, as players who have been in the league longer and are coming off old deals under the last collective bargaining agreement can make substantially more than players coming off their rookie deals.

Basically, someone like Greg Monroe can get the “max” and Carmelo Anthony can get the “max,” and their annual salaries can still be around $6 million apart. 

For this offseason, there are only three unrestricted veteran free agents who should receive a max offer: LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and Chris Bosh.

Realistically, Dirk Nowitzki could have joined that group, but he instead decided to take much less money to help Dallas retain cap space to bring talent around him. Nowitzki’s three-year deal worth $30 million is one of the best bargains we’ve seen in a while.

According to Brian Windhorst of, James wants a max salary this offseason:

LeBron James will have a completely different process and a different priority when he opens his free agency at 12:01 a.m. ET Tuesday than he did in 2010, sources told

Teams that contact James will be informed that he wants no less than the maximum salary number for next season, sources said. The max number for James is projected to be about $20.7 million.

Both Bosh and Anthony should land max deals either with their current teams or elsewhere. If James returns to Miami, Bosh will likely have to take less than his full max, unless Dwyane Wade takes a massive pay cut to to compensate for both deals. 

Anthony could potentially take a little less, but if no one is joining him immediately in New York or he’s not leaving money on the table for another free-agent acquisition elsewhere, there’s probably little incentive for him to do so. It is important to note his stated priorities, however.

“My concern is to be able to compete on a high level, a championship level, coming in this last stretch of my career,” Anthony said on SportsCenter in February, via ESPN New York. “I want to compete at that level.”

LeBron and Melo are the best bets to receive the most money possible, while Bosh’s deal will almost certainly depend on what LeBron does.

Here’s where the big surprises in free agency will likely come from.

Pegging how much restricted free agents can land is often difficult, as sometimes they don’t get offer sheets from other teams and instead negotiate with the team that holds their rights exclusively.

That’s what happened with Boston Celtics guard Avery Bradley, who, according to Baxter Holmes of TheBoston Globe, signed a four-year deal worth $32 million.

Bradley came with an expensive price tag, but that’s nothing compared to what some of the big restricted free agents should make.

Greg Monroe is still a candidate for a max offer, as David Aldridge at explained earlier this year: “The problem, as the Pistons knew last fall, is that Monroe’s agent is David Falk. He has gotten the price he said he’d get for his clients for two decades—and he says the price for Monroe will be a max contract.”

With no other viable franchise big man on the market other than Bosh, Monroe should get the max once a few other pieces fall in place.

He won’t be the only restricted free agent to get that, though.

Phoenix Suns guard Eric Bledsoe should receive a max offer sheet somewhere, as Phoenix isn’t likely to negotiate with him unnecessarily while there are still players like James and Anthony out there who could potentially sign with cap space.

Utah Jazz forward Gordon Hayward didn’t seem quite as likely to receive the full max, but Rick Bonnell of theCharlotte Observer reported on July 8 that he got just such an offer from the Charlotte Hornets. Now, it’ll be up to the Jazz to make a decision on whether to match.

Bledsoe and Monroe should both get max deals, and there’s a chance Hayward does as well. No other restricted free agent has a good shot, though I wouldn’t be shocked if Parsons received one.   

LeBron James Reportedly Opts to Become Free Agent: Latest Details, Reaction

LeBron James Reportedly Opts to Become Free Agent: Latest Details, Reaction


Break out your “take my talents” jokes from 2010. LeBron James reportedly has exercised his early termination option for the 2014-15 NBA season and will become an unrestricted free agent on July 1.

ESPN’s Chris Broussard reports Rich Paul, LeBron James’ agent, has informed the Heat of his client’s decision:



Bleacher Report’s Ethan Skolnick has more insight into the decision:



CNN’s Rachel Nichols notes that things are going to get crazy with James hitting the open market:



Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated notes that the decision to opt out was a tactical one:



Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press reports that James has no idea where he’ll wind up:



The Miami Heat forward was due $20.59 million for next season, which could have been his fifth with the club. James’ six-year, $109.83 million contract carried early termination options for both the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons.

Speculation about James’ potential departure has run rampant for much of the season. Almost half the league will have significant cap space this summer, most notably the Los Angeles Lakers. James will lead a free-agent class that also includes friend Carmelo Anthony, though it’s far more surprising to see the four-time NBA MVP’s name on the open market.


“At this point, I can’t,” James told NBATV in February, when asked if he could see himself leaving the Heat. “At this point, I can’t. We don’t know what can happen from now to July, so what I’ve been able to do this whole season to this point is just worry about what’s at hand, and that’s winning another championship.”

While understandably worrisome, James opting out far from ends his Heat career. Under the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement, Miami can offer him a five-year maximum deal worth roughly $115 million. Other teams are limited to a four-year pact maxing out at $85 million. That $30 million can make all the difference for even someone of James’ financial means.

Opting out merely allows James to assess his options.

Dwyane Wade‘s prime has either already been passed, or close to it.Chris Bosh has disappeared in three consecutive postseasons against the Indiana Pacers, and he turned 30 in March. Both have the same ETO as James.

Ray Allen turns 39 in July and is hitting free agency, Shane Battier is retiring, and Mario Chalmers can walk this summer. Udonis Haslem and Chris Andersen each have player options, though it’d be a surprise to see either opt out.

There are a ton of moving components here, each of which will have to be solved by Pat Riley.

The Heat, despite their aging roster and noticeable foibles, have won two NBA championships and gone to four straight Finals over the past four seasons. It would have been an historical anomaly to see James walk away at the pinnacle of an ongoing dynasty. But Riley needs to provide James with a cogent plan on how to rebuild the talent surrounding the Big Three. Miami is well over the projected salary cap if you include cap holds, and it’s nearing the dreaded repeater tax bracket.

Given the Heat amnestied Finals hero Mike Miller to reduce their tax last summer, this is no longer the no-brainer situation James walked into.

There is also an underlying financial component.

James is risking his long-term earning power and maximizing it. His five-year max, had he opted into the 2014-15 season, would have been roughly $123 million. He’d be 35 by the end of his next five-year contract, an age at which not many players (Kobe Bryant exceptions aside) are handed massive paydays. Analytically speaking (per, ages 34 and 35 feature among the biggest drops inexpected performance.

Should James leave now, his four-year deal would end at age 33. He might even be able to force a third-year player option, which maximizes his potential of procuring max-level money into his late 30s. Doing so also means leaving $30 million guaranteed on the table.



There is a loyalty factor to consider as well. The biggest draw to Miami beyond winning has been the familial atmosphere Riley has cultivated. As Dan Le Batard of the Miami Herald wrote in April, James may have played close to home when in Cleveland, but he never felt at “home” until he signed with the Heat. Beginning with the Big Three and on down the line through Riley and owner Micky Arison, these guys like each other.

But, as we saw in “The Decision” era, he is also a pragmatist. James spurned his hometown and engulfed his public reputation in flames to win in Miami. He’s older and more comfortable with his all-time standing now, yet James is understandingly unwilling to play out the remainder of his prime in mediocrity.

There were already ever-so-slight signs of slippage. Though he averaged his customary 27.1 points, 6.9 rebounds and 6.4 assists, James was downright bad defensively at times last season. His effort waxed and waned, his rotations were sloppy, and there were countless moments when he’d eschew transition defense entirely to complain about a missed call.

Those are signs of the incredible wear James has put on his body these last few seasons. No player on the planet has played more minutes since the 2010-11 season, and only Kevin Durant is remotely close. With Wade breaking down, James might be reading the tea leaves and looking to repeat history—a situation where he can be The Man without having to carry the entire load.

Or he could just be looking for a fat new contract. Either way, Riley and Co. officially have their work cut out for them.

Chicago Bulls Willing to Trade Any Player Except Derrick Rose To Land Carmelo, LeBron or Love

Anthony x Rose


The Chicago Bulls always seem to be one additional scorer away from being a championship contender and now they’re willing to move whatever pieces they have to, to get it, excluding Derrick Rose of course.

Ideally the Bulls would need to build around former MVP Derrick Rose (hoping he can stay healthy) and Defensive Player of the Year, Joakim Noah.  They’re hoping to add Carmelo Anthony as that last vital piece and there’s several ways they can do it.

via Chicago Sun Times.

According to several NBA sources Sunday, the Bulls have been actively looking to improve the starting lineup at almost any cost, with Derrick Rose the only untouchable player — and not by choice.

“They are looking to exhaust as many assets as it will take,’’ one source said of general manager Gar Forman and head of basketball operations John Paxson….

Carmelo Anthony is still Plan A as the Bulls and the rest of the NBA await to see if the Knicks forward will opt out of his contract. But the Bulls are more active in their pursuit of Kevin Love than initially rumored. Also, don’t rule out LeBron James coming into play again if the four-time MVP opts out of his deal.


It’s long been assumed that they would amnesty Carlos Boozer but trading away Taj Gibson would be a big loss.  It’s a loss that many consider worth it.  Of course it would help the Bulls tremendously if they land one of the big aforementioned stars but you don’t want to lose depth.  A good bench is also important *cough* Heat v. Spurs *cough*.

– Shaina Auxilly (@Shay_Marie)

Heat’s LeBron James (leg cramps) expects to be ’100 percent’ for Finals Game 2

LeBron James met with the media on Friday afternoon for the first time since suffering cramps in Game 1.


SAN ANTONIO — Unable to explain exactly why his left leg cramped up during the Heat’s 110-95 loss to the Spurs in Game 1 of the Finals, LeBron James nevertheless pledged Friday that he expected to be back to full health for Game 2.

“I’ll be all right, I’ll be in uniform on Sunday,” James said Friday from the Spurs’ practice facility. “I should be 100 percent on Sunday. Obviously I’m going to take it light today.  Training staff said I should take it light today, give the body another day to recover. Tomorrow I should be back on my feet full go, and I got all day Sunday to get ready for Sunday night.”


Miami looked like a totally different team without its All-NBA First Team forward, giving up fourth-quarter runs of 10-4 and 16-3 while James was sidelined with leg cramps. Heat coach Erik Spoelstra compared James’ departure to a “punch in the gut” and James said after the game that he felt “frustration and anger” at the timing of his cramps.

Of course, the fact that the AT&T Center’s air conditioning system was not functioning during Game 1 loomed over James’ cramping.

“They were some extreme conditions,” James said. “I’ve never played an NBA game like it was last night as far as the heat. Not an excuse, but it was an extreme condition.”

The high temperatures in San Antonio have topped 90 degrees this week and the inside of the AT&T Center was nearly as hot during Game 1.

JENKINS: LeBron’s cramps should worry the Heat | James responds to ‘cramp-gate’ 

 This was not the first time James has succumbed to cramping, not by a long shot. He was forced from Game 4 of the 2012 Finals against the Thunder with cramps, and he told reporters Friday the issue has dogged him since high school. James noted that he has had the issue investigated by doctors on multiple occasions over the years without any magic solutions turning up in the tests. He also made it clear that the Heat trainers put him through an elaborate preventative treatment program, and a simple lack of fluids wasn’t the issue.

“I hydrated as much as I could to the point where your stomach feels like it just can’t take anymore,” James said. “Last night it just got to a point where the body just had enough, just dehydrated. Between jumping and running, and cutting and sweating, and a little bit of everything, exhaustion, you know, the body just hit the shutdown.”

In Spoelstra’s opinion, James’ cramping resulted from the “extreme conditions” of the gym coupled with his franchise player’s determined, non-stop style of play. Spoelstra revealed that James took “seven cramping pills” during Game 1, while also receiving ice treatment and changing his jersey at halftime. Nothing worked, though, as James asked out of the game earlier than usual in the third quarter and then twice in the fourth quarter, because he felt his muscles locking up throughout his left leg.

“The biggest issue that I think is lost out there is how competitive LeBron James is when you get to this level,” Spoelstra said. “Most athletes pace themselves, it’s not a coincidence and a secret and why we have had the success we have had with the best player in the world, when he pushes his body past the point of regular limits for a competitive advantage. I think it’s an extremely admirable trait.  … It was killing him being on that sideline. 99.9  percentile of people have never pushed their body to that level.”

James finished with a game-high 25 points (on 9-for-17 shooting), six rebounds, three assists and three steals but he only managed to play 33 minutes, his third-fewest of the postseason. Afterwards, he received multiple IVs and said he had trouble sleeping, because he was using the bathroom so frequently. The inability to control his muscles, and the impact of his absence, left James venting the day after.

GOLLIVER: Spoelstra says Spurs should be fined if AC isn’t fixed for Game 2 

“To feel like my body failed me last night, I was angry in the fact that I couldn’t help my team get over the hump,” he said. “In a huge Game 1, wanting to make a statement. … [I felt] disappointed in myself, angry at myself that I couldn’t be out there where I knew my team needed me the most. That was frustrating for sure.”

The Heat did not go through a practice on Friday, instead choosing to review film. Spoelstra said the plan is to practice on Saturday. James will receive treatment over the weekend and plans to attend practice on Saturday.

For their part, the Spurs extended both sympathy and a hope that James would be able to return for Game 2.

Tim Duncan, a native of the Virgin Islands, said that the temperature was “pretty bad” and that he hadn’t played in “anything like that since I left the islands.” He recalled a Game 7 overtime loss to the Mavericks in 2006, in which he played through cramps to score 41 points and grab 15 rebounds.

“There is no shaking [cramps] off,” Duncan said, when asked about critics who might question why James wasn’t able to play through the pain. “Your body is shutting down and you’re unable to move. Whatever is cramping, you’re unable to get away from that.”

Like a number of the Heat players, Tony Parker said that the higher temperature didn’t bother him, pointing out that he has played a number of high-level competitions in Europe in gyms that did not have air conditioning. Regardless, he said the Spurs want to complete their quest for redemption following their 2013 Finals loss to the Heat against an opponent at full strength.

“I want the AC to come back, I want to play the real Miami Heat, the two-time champs, with LeBron back,” Parker said. “I hope it’s not bad and I hope he’s going to be 100 percent on Sunday. Because as a competitor you want to play against the best.”

The Spurs issued a statement on Friday saying that the broken AC system has been repairedand that the arena should return to its usual conditions for Game 2.

Game 2 is set to tip at 9 p.m. ET on Sunday in San Antonio, before the series shifts to Miami for Game 3 on Tuesday.

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