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Dion Waiters: LeBron James called few days before decision and said ‘be ready’

Aug 6, 2014, 10:50 PM EDT

Cleveland Cavaliers v Miami Heat Cleveland Cavaliers v Miami Heat

Pat Riley was caught pretty off guard. Dwyane Wade said he didn’t know until the night before. Most of us didn’t find out until the Sports Illustrated letter.

LeBron James clued very few people into his decision to sign with the Cavaliers.

But one person who had an early idea: Cleveland guard Dion Waiters.

Waiters, via Brendan Bowers of SLAM:

“We’ve talked,” Waiters said of his new teammate. “I actually talked with LeBron before he made his decision. He called me and just told me to be ready. Be ready. I talked to him four or five days before he made his decision. He just got on the phone and said I haven’t made my mind up yet but be ready.

I told him that I’m already working hard. I’ll be ready. And he said, I know, I know you are. Then a few days later I read the letter. I was just really excited for the city of Cleveland. I think the city, more than anybody, deserves this. They deserve to have LeBron coming back. I think the excitement is really back in Cleveland and I’m looking forward to being a part of that.”

On the court, I don’t see Waiters and LeBron as a great fit. Waiters can’t do enough off the ball, and the ball obviously will – and should – run through LeBron (and to a lesser degree, Kyrie Irving). It’s to the point I, unlike Waiters, don’t believe Waiters should start.

But there’s clearly a level of trust between LeBron and Waiters, and that can go a long way – if Waiters isn’t included in the Kevin Love trade.

  1. sportsfan18 - Aug 6, 2014 at 10:59 PM

    Hey Dion… you sure Lebron didn’t mean “be ready… to go to Minnesota?”


    Hey Dion, the game of basketball continues when the ball is NOT in your hands you know…

    LBJ will learn ya something tho… or he’ll bench you.

    • au1978 - Aug 6, 2014 at 11:36 PM

      Lol, best comment I’ve seen in a while!

    • pburghballin - Aug 7, 2014 at 2:57 PM

      I laughed…

  2. ProBasketballPundit - Aug 6, 2014 at 11:12 PM

    He probably said, “Be ready to morph into Vinnie Johnson 2.0.”

  3. clownsfan - Aug 6, 2014 at 11:13 PM

    LBJ loves this kid. No way he’s goin to MIN

  4. ljl2 - Aug 6, 2014 at 11:26 PM

    He said this when interviewed in Vefas while watching Cavs play in summer league for the team site. Wasn’t news then?

    • tv63 - Aug 7, 2014 at 1:46 AM

      Yeah Reporter must have been in a time warp for a month.

      • mcmystery76 - Aug 7, 2014 at 8:04 AM

        PBT writers aren’t exactly known for their punctuality, or talent, or doing anything besides re-posting other sites’ articles…

  5. clevelandrox - Aug 6, 2014 at 11:37 PM

    good to know that Dion is staying put, wish i could say the same bout wiggins…

  6. jasper36 - Aug 7, 2014 at 12:18 AM

    Cavs fans salty about losing Wiggins, when they will have an All Star team. That will run through the East, “Come On Man”(In my Chris Carter voice).

    • balsagna - Aug 7, 2014 at 7:33 AM

      I think a vast majority of Cavs fans who have an issue with the trade are just concerned that Love will leave in a year and we will have given the #1 pick away for a 1 year rental. It’s hard to argue that Love won’t be the superior player during Lebron’s prime years. People were scarred by the Benedict Arnold Boozer fiasco, even though they aren’t very similar, but the feelings linger. We are going from the slums to the penthouse…I couldn’t be happier.

      • showtime1911 - Aug 7, 2014 at 8:17 AM

        I agree . Love will leave . You can book it now. The only way he won’t leave is if cleveland wins the championship. Other than that he’s gone.

  7. ravenswhat - Aug 7, 2014 at 7:04 AM

    Be ready…to leave.

  8. mungman69 - Aug 7, 2014 at 8:21 AM

    Waiters better hope that he doesn’t land in Philly. He would be the Philly Pholly!

  9. mckaymatt - Aug 7, 2014 at 8:39 AM

    Not implying Waiters is some great off the ball player but his catch and shoot %’s last year were decent from 3, he shot ~42% from 3 on catch and shoot opportunities on a team coached by Mike Brown offensively.

    I’m not expecting some great turnaround but to think he won’t be able to succeed playing with LBJ is a bit premature.

  10. seasickcecil - Aug 7, 2014 at 8:51 AM

    I’m not sure why Love would go through all the trouble to force a trade to play with Lebron and then leave the next year. He could have just stayed in Minny and went wherever he wanted to at the end of the season.

    • kinggw - Aug 7, 2014 at 9:42 AM

      He didnt force a trade to play with Lebron. He’d been trying to get out of Minny long before LBJ was even rumored to be headed back to Cleveland. Love has indicated he’d be happy playing with a number of teams.

      If traded to the Cavs, he can still go wherever he wants at the end of the season. He at least gets to play for something this year.

      • mckaymatt - Aug 7, 2014 at 3:08 PM

        kinggw – I’m pretty sure K.Love, through his agent had said that he would be willing to sign a long term deal in Cleveland once LBJ signed there. Before that signing happened he had be adamant that he wouldn’t commit to Cleveland if he was traded there.

    • loungefly74 - Aug 7, 2014 at 9:52 AM

      yeah…Love will love playing with Bron. he doesnt leave…

      as far as Waiters…well, he will be a good bench guy… just like he was in college.

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