Posts Tagged ‘Darrell Armstrong’

Setting The Record Straight On ‘Cough-gate’

MIAMI — Just so we’re clear, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James never mocked Dirk Nowitzki specifically. And even if they did, they were only toying around like that to mess with the media and not the Mavericks’ star.

At least that’s the Wade James version of what transpired before Game 5 of The Finals in Dallas, where James and Wade played to the cameras as they walked out of American Airlines Center.

Saturday afternoon here at American Airlines Arena, we got the latest twist in “Cough-gate.” And while Wade, James and every one of Nowitzki’s teammates that was asked about the footage tried to downplay its significance, Nowitzki was surprisingly pointed in his response to being spoofed by the competition.

“I just thought it was a little childish, a little ignorant,” Nowitzki said. “I’ve been in this league for 13 years.  I’ve never faked an injury or an illness before.  But it happened.  It’s over to me.  It’s not going to add anything extra to me.  This is the NBA Finals.  If you need an extra motivation, you have a problem. So we’re one win away from my dream, what I’ve worked on for half of my life.  This is really all I’m worried about.  This is all I’m focusing on.  And not really offthecourt stuff that happened. ”

The video footage of Wade and James poking fun added an extra layer of telenovela-style drama to a fascinating series that didn’t really need any extra spice. The games have been well-played, tightly contested and full of breathtaking plays from both sides.

Really, the only thing that seemed to be missing was some genuine disdain for each other by the two sides, the rematch of the 2006 Finals storyline didn’t carry much weight since so few of the principles this time around weren’t involved then. And no offense to DeShawn Stevenson, but his longstanding feud with James hasn’t gained much traction either.

All that changed when Wade and James walked down that hallway and started in on their comedy routine that Wade insists wasn’t directed at Nowitzki.

“First of all, it wasn’t fake coughing. I actually did cough,” he said. “And with the cameras being right there, we made a joke out of it because we knew you guys were going to blow it up. You did exactly what we knew. We never said Dirk’s name. I think he’s not the only one in the world who can get sick or have a cough. We just had fun with the cameras being right there in our face about the blowup of the incident, and it held to be true. You blew it up.”