Wade says NBA game in NY should have been postponed

Sat Nov 3, 2012 12:02am EDT
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By Julian Linden

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The healing powers of sport are a contentious issue, with the line between uniting and dividing a thin one easily crossed, as the organizers of the New York Marathon learned on Friday.

The marathon was canceled because the public demanded it. Race officials had misjudged the mood of a city recovering from the devastation caused by superstorm Sandy and suddenly athletes from other sports were second guessing themselves.

At Madison Square Garden, in the heart of midtown Manhattan, the New York Knicks and the Miami Heat were warming up for the National Basketball Association game at Madison Square Garden when word filtered through the marathon was off.

The NBA had already canceled the Knicks' season opener against the Brooklyn Nets, which was supposed to be played on Thursday, making the game against the reigning NBA champions the first in New York since Sandy wreaked havoc on the region.

Players from both teams were wondering whether they should be playing at a time when so many people had died and others were suffering.

Miami guard Dwyane Wade said the game should have been canceled. He felt uneasy and announced he would donate his game fee, reported to be around $200,000, to the relief effort.

"I just felt that (there were) bigger things to be concerned about than us being here to play a basketball game," Wade told reporters before the game.

Wade's team mate LeBron James was unsure about whether the game should proceed, but believed it would at least provide a temporary diversion.   Continued...

Miami Heat forward LeBron James reacts as he joins guard Dwyane Wade (L) and forward Shane Battier (R) on the bench during their loss to the New York Knicks in the fourth quarter of their NBA basketball game at Madison Square Garden in New York November 2, 2012. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine