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Turns out Dirk Nowitzki's tongue is as spiky as his reported Game 4 fever.
The Dallas Mavericks forward lashed out at Dwyane Wade and LeBron James today over a video showing the pair feigning coughs and laughing as they walked through a tunnel in Dallas' AmericanAirlines Center before Game 5.
"I just thought it was a little childish, a little ignorant," Nowitzki said before Saturday's practice in Miami. "I've been in this league for 13 years. I've never faked an injury or illness."
Hmmmm...could he be throwing shade at anyone in particular?
Of course, everyone's missing the point, but the damage has already been done: the NBA's biggest villain and his buddy appeared to mock Dallas' ailling golden boy, so the fact that Wade and LeBron were actually poking fun at the media's overreaction -- not at Dirk Nowitzki -- is blowing over the talking heads like Donald Trump's hair on a blustery day.
"I actually did cough," Wade told reporters today, explaining that the pair weren't poking fun at Nowitzki. "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...
"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 in our face about the blowup of the incident, and it held to be true. You blew it up."
While Wade may have a point about the media's overblown narrative, "The Fever!" -- watch for it on Broadway soon! -- and their tendancy to blow everything Heat-related out of proportion, there's no doubt it was the wrong time to make such a point.
After all, doesn't LeBron have enough to worry about?
"There's bigger issues in this series than that," James said, while Heat fans everywhere presumably nodded along, forming the words "yes, like your scoring" with hands folded in silent plea to the basketball gods.