Dwyane Wade Wants to Remain on Cavs' Bench When Isaiah Thomas Returns to Lineup

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistDecember 5, 2017

Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dwyane Wade controls the ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Detroit Pistons, Monday, Nov. 20, 2017, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Carlos Osorio/Associated Press

Cleveland Cavaliers guard Dwyane Wade said Tuesday that he wants to continue coming off the bench when guard Isaiah Thomas returns from injury.

According to Joe Vardon of Cleveland.com, Wade expressed contentment with his current role, saying, "I'm good where I'm at. The problem would only be worse when Isaiah comes back, because he's going to need his shots. Where I am now, it's working for me and for this team."

Tom Withers of the Associated Press reported in November that Thomas was trending toward returning ahead of the original late-December timetable given by the Cavs amid rehab on his injured hip.

Wade began the season in Cleveland's starting lineup, but he requested to be moved to the bench in favor of JR Smith after the third game of the campaign.

Smith started alongside Derrick Rose until Rose went down with an ankle injury and took a hiatus to mull his NBA future. Rose rejoined the team Monday, though, and could resume starting when healthy.

If Wade opts to remain on the bench as the point guard for the second unit after Thomas comes back, however, it could make it difficult for head coach Tyronn Lue to find playing time for Rose.

Lue told Vardon on Tuesday that Wade doesn't necessarily have to run the point off the bench following Thomas' return: "There's still ways to get him the ball. Just coming off the second side, still running the same action, so he can handle or D-Rose can handle. Not a problem."

The 35-year-old Wade is averaging 11.9 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game this season, and he is coming off one of his best games with the Cavs after scoring 24 points against the Chicago Bulls on Monday.

The surging Cavaliers have won 12 games in a row, and they are currently second in the Eastern Conference at 17-7.

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