CLEVELAND – Dwyane Wade walked in. LeBron James limped off.
The celebrated reunion of the close friends didn’t get off to a roaring start.
James turned his left ankle during practice Wednesday night, his first workout with Wade, who signed with the Cavaliers to chase another championship with his close friend.
A Cavaliers spokesman said James had X-rays that were negative. The three-time NBA champion didn’t practice Thursday so he could undergo treatment. He’s expected to be day to day.
The severity of James’ injury is not known.
James said Wednesday that he was thrilled to again be playing with Wade, his teammate for four seasons in Miami. They won two NBA titles together and have joined forces again after Wade turned down offers from other teams to sign a one-year, $2.3 million contract – the veteran’s minimum – to play in Cleveland.
Wade also didn’t practice Thursday so he could attend to a personal matter. The 12-time All-Star will be introduced by the Cavs on Friday following practice.
But he has already made an impression with his teammates and Cavs coach Tyronn Lue, who is going to have to figure out how to best use the 35-year-old Wade’s talents.
“Came in, played really well,” Lue said of Wade’s first practice at the team’s facility in Independence, Ohio. “Just got off the plane and did his physical and came in and we had him playing the backup point guard role with the second team. He was fantastic. Him, (Kyle) Korver, Jeff Green, Tristan (Thompson) and Shump (Iman Shumpert).
“Had a great flow, great chemistry and just trying to figure things out and learn on the fly. But he’s a smart player and picked things up really quick.”
Lue isn’t saying if he’ll start Wade ahead of J.R. Smith on a first unit that includes James, Thompson, Derrick Rose and Kevin Love.
“We have a plan in place,” Lue said. “I’m not going to say who is going to start as of right now, but we have a plan in place and we’ll see how it looks and then we’ll go from there.”
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