Ibaka gives LeBron extra motivation

RYAN WOLSTAT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:15 AM ET

MIAMI - Ah the finals, where drama and controversy get manufactured by over-eager media members.

Here’s the thing, Serge Ibaka saying LeBron James wasn’t a good defender on Monday was a silly comment, so James responding on Tuesday that Ibaka was “stupid” was fair comment.

As was his assertion that the media tries to “blow up” something an opponent says about him every series.

It was a stupid thing for Ibaka to say because it’s simply not true and because James is already dominating this series like nobody else. Why give him extra motivation?

And, of course, the jackals among us took the angle and ran with it and that’s too bad.

There are enough intriguing basketball storylines to focus on rather than this tripe.

Hoping to put an end to the matter, Kevin Durant said the obvious “LeBron James is a good defender. I’ll tell him that. He’s a good defender.”

Even players in the Thunder locker room were grumbling heading into Game 4 about the overplaying of a “nothing” angle and said it was so irritating that it should be used as ammunition to cut down on the amount of availability the media gets.

But, that’s the nature of our world right now, unfortunately. Controversy sells — just check out the ratings for ESPN’s unwatchable First Take — even if it’s as artificial as many of the denizens of South Beach.

DISTRACTIONS

Talk about bad timing.

Dwyane Wade has had to deal with child custody issues during these finals with his ex-wife. Wade is the rare male professional athlete who has custody of his children.

On Tuesday, his attorney went to court asking a Chicago judge to suspend his ex-wife’s right to visitation after an incident over the weekend delayed their return.

Wade managed to ignore the distraction and had a solid outing on Sunday — Father’s Day— even though his sons were finally brought to him early that morning.

Wade’s ex-wife, Siohvaughn Funches-Wade was charged with two counts of attempted child abduction, two counts of unlawful visitation interference and one count of resisting arrest, according to the Associated Press.

Another woman, Nadgee Alarcon was also charged with resisting arrest.

Wade has written a book about being a single father and the custody battle which was a major aspect of his ugly 2010 divorce.

Meanwhile, super trainer Tim Grover — who also famously has worked with Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant — is helping Wade, who is battling a knee ailment, by working on Wade’s “body and mind,” according to the Palm Beach Post.

RILEY HONOURED

Heat architect Pat Riley is the fifth winner of the Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award.

The award honours the legendary Daly’s life in basketball and his “standard of integrity, competitive excellence and tireless promotion” of the sport.

Riley has gone from standout college player, to NBA contributor, to legendary coach and later a championship-winning executive.

He has 1,210 wins as a coach with the Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks and Heat.

He joins Tommy Heinsohn, Jack Ramsay, Tex Winter and Lenny Wilkens as winners of the award.

Daly coached the Bad Boys-era Detroit Pistons to two NBA titles and helmed the greatest team ever assembled, the 1992 Dream Team.

He passed away in 2009 after fighting pancreatic cancer.

Daly and Riley split two meetings in the NBA finals.

If Miami beats Oklahoma City in this series, Riley would win his eighth league title as a player, assistant or head coach or executive.


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