Suspended Wade insists kick to groin was not intentional
Dec 29, 2012 (Menafn - Sun Sentinel - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Dwyane Wade insisted Friday he did not target the groin of Charlotte Bobcats guard Ramon Sessions with the Wednesday kick that left him with a one-game suspension, with the Miami Heat instead claiming they are the ones being targeted by unnecessary roughness.
Wade on Thursday was suspended by the NBA for Friday night's game against the Detroit Pistons, "for flailing his leg and making contact with the groin" of Sessions, an incident that occurred with 8:12 remaining in the fourth quarter of the Heat's 105-92 victory at Time Warner Cable Arena.
"It was a bang-bang play, man," said Wade, who attended the Heat's Friday morning shootaround but was banned from returning to the Palace of Auburn Hills for Friday night's game. "It's a play you kind of have to be there. It was something that was looked at over video review and it can be taken any kind of way."
Of the league's sanction, coach Erik Spoelstra said, "We accept it but we don't agree with it. As an organization we have his back."
Spoelstra, however, did not stop there.
"That was a very physical game. There were a lot of hard hits in that game," he said. "What we're getting tired of as an organization are the hits, particularly to Dwyane and LeBron [James] and Chris [Bosh]. And that is the game plan against us.
"Now, our guys thrive on that type of game plan and they're physical players, but there is an excess of hard fouls against our guys."
The Heat later issued a statement that said the team "accepted the decision of the NBA" but also noted, "Unfortunately, he is the type of player, along with other players on our roster, that defenses take privileges with. We stand with Dwyane and support him in this situation and have made our feelings known to the league office."
Earlier in that game in Charlotte, James took a hard foul from Bobcats guard Gerald Henderson, with Henderson and Heat power forward Udonis Haslem given technical fouls for the ensuing scrum.
Sessions later was called for a foul on Wade, which led to the kicking incident.
"That was a reaction. From my point of view, I thought it was a reaction," said James, who was on the court at the time. "Ramon ran up on him and it was a reaction. I don't think he intentionally tried to kick him in the groin.
"I don't know if you can intentionally do something like that and hit him right there, right where you wanted to. It was a reaction and D-Wade was definitely trying to protect himself, but it is what it is."
In Brooklyn Friday for a game against the Nets, Sessions said the video left little doubt.
"They looked at the film and saw what everybody else saw," he told reporters. "It was a kick to the groin, there was no secret about it. Things like that happen in the battle of a game."
Said Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap, "When we looked at the film, it was obvious they had to do something. Dwyane is a class human being, he represents the league at the highest level, but there's no place for that."
Wade declined to follow up on Spoelstra's assertion of the Heat being targeted for overly aggressive play.
"I'm not going to be the one to complain," he said. "That's not my style. We're just going to go out there and we're going to play the game. We're going to play the game that they allow us to play and that's all we can do."
For Wade it was the latest in a series of retaliatory acts that some say have crossed the line of sportsmanship.
"I can't worry about what people say about me, as I continue to say," he said. "I'm very consistent in my messaging. I don't worry about it, what people say. I just go about it and try to be who I am and play the way that I play and take it from there."
Spoelstra said Mike Miller likely would again start in place of Wade, as he has done in the three games Wade has missed this season.
Spoelstra said Ray Allen would be back after missing the Charlotte game due to a bruised right shoulder sustained Tuesday's home victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.
In the wake of his suspension, Wade posted on his Twitter account that his greatest concern was how his young sons would view his act.
He said Friday that neither of his sons had yet seen the replay.
"I'm sure my oldest son will have a little question for me and I'll have to sit down and I'll have to explain to him kind of about the situation and kind of what happened," he said. "That's my biggest concern, is explaining it to my kids, kind of how things are perceived and how things are done."
It is Wade's first career suspension.
"I thought he would hear something about it, but I don't think he would get suspended," James said. "I was right there on the play, but I don't think it was intentional."
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