LeBron James spilled some tea recently about the somewhat chilly reception best friend Dwyane Wade got upon his arrival in Cleveland this offseason, and now more details are trickling in about who exactly James was referring to.
James told Jason Lloyd of The Athletic in a feature that ran on Thursday that some Cavaliers originally did not want to have Wade on the team.
“There was a couple of guys with it,” said the four-time MVP, according to Marcel Mutoni of SLAMOnline. “But it wasn’t a lot.”
“I still know what he’s capable of doing,” James added of Wade, previously his teammate for four seasons and two titles in Miami. “Why wouldn’t you want another guy in the locker room that brings a championship mentality and a guy who can still play? So, of course, it bothered me, but f— it. It is what it is.”
On Friday, Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com revealed some names, specifically, veterans JR Smith, Channing Frye, and Iman Shumpert.
J.R. Smith had a big problem with Wade coming here initially, as Wade knocked him from the starting lineup. Channing Frye lost his best friend on the team, Richard Jefferson, because Wade took his spot on the roster. Iman Shumpert was not exactly doing back flips, as Wade (historically) plays off the ball, like Shumpert.
At least Smith in particular was previously said to have been “hurt” by Wade’s arrival, especially since he initially had to move to the bench to accommodate the 12-time All-Star. But now that Wade has accepted and is thriving in a sixth man role, helping the Cavs win ten straight games and counting, it’s seems safe to say that his teammates have all probably come around on him by now.