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Dwyane Wade was reportedly the biggest problem for the Cavaliers

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If you believe the Cleveland Cavaliers’ disastrous team chemistry problems were due to the beef Isaiah Thomas had with Kevin Love, you’re not alone.

Even a cursory glance at Twitter this season would imbue you with the narrative that in as much time as it took him to be traded from the Celtics to the Cavaliers, Thomas went from a lovable locker room presence to a malignant clubhouse cancer whose negativity metastasized throughout the Cavs’ locker room.

And indeed, in as much time as it took Cleveland to try and keep LeBron James from going to the Lakers by bringing the Lakers to LeBron in a trade that brought Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr., Thomas meshed with his new teammates and scored 22 points in his Lakers debut, a loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday.

But it turns out that Thomas may have been wrongly accused.

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Not about the Kevin Love thing; the beef between those two guys was a matter of public record.

Nay, the real crime for which Thomas seems to have been acquitted is the clubhouse cancer label, which belongs not to Thomas, but to longtime friend of James, and all-around Hall of Fame-caliber NBA legend, Dwyane Wade.

Ashish Mathur of Amico Hoops said, “A source tells AmicoHoops that [Cavaliers coach Tyronn] Lue felt Wade was the biggest issue in the Cavs’ locker room.”

Peter Vecsey of NBC Sports threw a big ol’ gasoline-soaked log on that fire when he accused Wade of behaving “unprofessionally and sapped the team’s energy and spirit.”

Reportedly, James even caught Wade checking Heat scores and watching games in the locker room, almost as if he were already retired and settled into a quiet life as a Miami Heat fan.

Cleveland traded Wade for next to nothing so Wade could do what he clearly wanted — play basketball in Miami again and potentially retire as a member of the team he helped put on the map in 2006 with the first NBA title in franchise history.

One can only hope Cleveland got at least a coupon for the NBA Store in the deal so they can get one of those sweet Miami Vice-inspired Heat jerseys.

Trading Wade was a final and seemingly necessary move for a team that had to more than just blow its roster; it needed to nuke it from orbit.

Wade, meanwhile, seems elated to be back in Miami.

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And his first shot in Miami’s 91-85 win over the Bucks Friday night in front of the home crowd found nothing but the bottom of the net.

When asked of his desire to end his career in Miami, Wade simply said, “This is it for me, guys. Imma stay here until I decide to hang it up.”

So as trades go, it was a win-win. Wade goes back to Miami, the Cavs exercise a malignancy from their locker room, Thomas never has to see Love again unless the Lakers are playing against Cleveland, and a re-engaged LeBron gets to lead his new batch of mates to a potential fourth straight NBA Finals matchup with the Golden State Warriors.

All’s well that ends well.

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Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Birthplace
Boston, Massachusetts
Education
Bachelor of Science in Accounting from University of Nevada-Reno
Location
Seattle, Washington
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Sports




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