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Smack / Jun 23, 2012 / 5:16 am

Next Season Has Already Begun; Tony Parker Sues For $20 million

Dwyane Wade & LeBron James - 2012 All Star

Dwyane Wade & LeBron James - 2012 All Star (photo. adidas)

The accolades keep pouring in for the NBA champion Miami Heat. LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, Mike Miller‘s Game 5 ghost and more partied till the break of dawn and then some on Friday morning. We even saw a photo with Wade’s shirt reading “Team No Sleep” and a photo of a 20-bottle sized super bottle of champagne. It was a celebration befitting a King, naturally, and a second day of coverage that echoed what we said here last night: Talk is cheap, but a title is tough. LeBron accomplished the second without much of the first this year, and it seems like most the fans and commentators are ready to forgive. And now, thanks to a regular-season MVP, Finals MVP and Larry O’Brien trophy, this season is one James won’t ever forget. … It might not be a total sweep for Wade, however. Reports on Friday showed that his aching knee (the one that cropped up against Indiana right after his worst game of the playoffs) could keep him from playing in London. He told the AP his left knee could need surgery. It’s the same knee he had surgery on in 2007, and now he has to choose: career or Olympic glory? If he feels any kind of nostalgia like us after watching “The Dream Team,” it would be a tough decision not to play in the Olympics with some of your closest friends, trading Barcelona’s Las Ramblas for London’s Piccadilly Circus. For his part, USA Hoops boss Jerry Colangelo said he hasn’t heard a definitive answer. On a related Team USA note, Colangelo is still considering James Harden for the team despite a disastrous Finals. It changed the “Fear The Beard” saying to more like “Put Your Worst Defender On The Beard” by the end. Do you agree? How much should the final five games of the year count on a USA honor? … Last year Dirk Nowitzki was having kids pick up his one-legged fade at this time. Now he’s going to put a scarf on a statue outside a soccer match. OK. … The biggest news of the day wasn’t the contrition of the Heat’s critics but about an NBAPA ruling. An independent arbitrator ruled that players claimed off waivers can retain early Bird and full Bird rights and re-sign with teams above the salary cap. In the case of Jeremy Lin and Steve Novak, they can re-sign for 175 percent more than the league average last year (because their own salaries were under that). Suddenly it gives the Knicks a chance to use that mid-level exception on a desperately needed point guard. Paging Steve Nash? One report out of Canada we saw had Nash’s top three teams as Phoenix, Portland and Toronto, though. Is Portland only there because it’s close to his British Columbia home? … Seen on Twitter: Kevin Garnett, James Jones and Mike Miller all might retire soon. If the last two go, who takes their Designated Shooter spots on the Heat? … Where could Brandon Roy land if he returns to the NBA next season, like he’s taken to Twitter to say he wants to? Count the Warriors in. Their GM has said that he would definitely take a look at the guy long considered to have little to no cartilage left on his knees. It’s like buying a Ferarri without breakpads. Looks good, still runs great, but it doesn’t seem safe in the long- or short-term to use it. … You all remember the NYC club fight Tony Parker got hurt in a few weeks back that Drake and Chris Brown started? The club’s operators remember it because they got hit Friday with a $20 million suit from the Spurs’ guard to cover the damage inflicted on his cornea. That’s a lot of cash, no doubt, but don’t dismiss it as too frivolous yet: Think of all the players the Spurs have who depend on Parker’s literal court vision, and all the money those contracts make up. Seeing Gregg Popovich‘s reactions to this club fight is why he needs a reality show. … We’re out like Dirk’s scarf.

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