May 26, 2016 | 2:03 pm EDT Update
“We’ll sit down and we’ll talk about that with Dwyane,” said Riley, who doesn’t do much for his negotiating position by proclaiming last season as Wade’s best overall performance since prior to the Big Three era. “He wants to win, I think, as much as he wants to do anything. Compensation to a player is not just a way to get paid and to live your life. Compensation to a player is about recognition and respect and place. We know where he belongs…He’s a lifer. What he’s done in this city over the last 13 years is irreplaceable and so we’re going to do the right thing. There’s no doubt.”
Wade, who flirted with the Los Angeles Lakers last summer, is in a similarly agreeable mood. “I don’t want to be on the market at all,” Wade said two days after the Heat’s season ended with a Game 7 loss to Toronto in the Eastern Conference semifinals. “I’m not curious at all. I want to get to it [with the Heat]. I want to be able to sign my deal and move on and not have to deal with any rumors, any free agency, any this, any that. This is where I want to end my career. So we’ll figure it out.”
Over last weekend Love was the problem, the no-show, the missing piece – only this time he wasn’t injured. And just like that, he was back, making Cleveland almost impossible to defend. His teammates had counseled and cajoled him, and perhaps even challenged him, in no uncertain terms. “R.J., he talked to me after the game and said, ‘That is why we are hard on you, big fella,’ ” Love said. “I know my teammates expect a lot out of me, and I expect a lot of out of them.”
For Love, it was back to making an impact and back to seizing the moment that he had to watch in street clothes a year ago. “LeBron said this morning, he relishes this opportunity, so it’s kind of the same thing,” Love said, standing quietly at his locker after the game. “Kyrie getting hurt in the Finals and not playing 100 percent throughout and myself not being able to play… “I’ll go out swinging either way.”
Tim MacMahon: Steph Curry: “We’re confident we can get a win tonight and take it from there. We can’t worry about Game 6, Game 7 unless we win tonight. We have a pretty good understanding of how to focus on tonight only.”
Thoughts on the controversial Draymond Green groin kick? Karl-Anthony Towns: No, I don’t think he meant it. Anyone who knows Draymond knows he’s not like that. Draymond’s a fierce competitor, but that’s not his character. He was just trying to get a foul called, and it just so happened that he just swung and his arms and legs just happened to hit him there. It was not intentional whatsoever.