“For a moment, it seemed like the Cleveland Cavaliers’ biggest off-season acquisition would not show for the Wine & Gold Scrimmage on Oct. 3. With 10 minutes to tip off, the sold out crowd at James A. Rhodes Arena gave a boisterous ovation every bit the size of his 7-foot-1-inch, 325 lb.””
For a moment, it seemed like the Cleveland Cavaliers’ biggest off-season acquisition would not show for the Wine & Gold Scrimmage on Oct. 3.
With 10 minutes to tip off, the sold out crowd at James A. Rhodes Arena gave a boisterous ovation every bit the size of his 7-foot-1-inch, 325 lb. frame.
After the ovation, Shaquille O’Neal led his Gold team to a 54-38 victory over LeBron James’ Wine team in the sixth annual intersquad scrimmage on the University of Akron campus.
O’Neal played 18 minutes, made six of eight shots, and led the Gold team with 12 points.
I was very excited about the basketball team, O’Neal said. It’s going to be an interesting, fun year.
He’s doing a great job, James said of O’Neal’s play thus far. He’s in shape, looks great. You can’t ask for more than that.
He’s getting up and down the court. He’s playing defense, and he looks really good in the low post on offense. That’s what we got him here for.
James opposed O’Neal on Oct. 3 and led the Wine team with 10 points.
Defending LeBron doesn’t help at all, Cavs guard Anthony Parker said with a laugh. You don’t gain anything. He’s just so strong and fast you just try to contain him and hope he misses.
Parker’s hopes became a reality. James only made four of 12 shots from the field and two of seven shots from the free throw stripe.
Parker, who was another off-season acquisition and fellow Gold teammate of O’Neal, scored five points, dished out five assists, and hit a three pointer in his team’s win.
Parker said he is still unsure of what his role may be on the Cavaliers.
That’s probably more of a question for Coach Brown, Parker said. Everybody knows what I was brought here to do from the offensive and defensive end.
As far as where I fit in minute wise, Coach Brown can better answer that question.
James said he is happy about the new additions to the Cavs.
I love the versatility of J. Moon (Jamario Moon) and AP (Anthony Parker), James said. They are the type of players that can really help our team.
Danny Green can be really good for us also, and, when Leon (Powe) gets back from injury, he’s going to be really good for us.
Moon played on the Gold team and contributed with nine points and five rebounds.
Green, a rookie from North Carolina University, tied James for the Wine team lead in points with 10 and also had three assists.
Powe, who was signed in the off-season, did not play in the scrimmage and will not be available until midseason. Powe previously played for the Boston Celtics.
Another member of the Cavaliers that did not participate in the scrimmage was shooting guard Delonte West.
Instead, West had a private workout at Cleveland Clinic Courts during the Wine & Gold Scrimmage.
West has recently had legal trouble as he was arrested for possession of firearms in the Washington, D.C., area.
Cavaliers general manager Danny Ferry said he is taking the proper actions to help West on and off the court.
Cavaliers starting point guard Mo Williams also did not participate in the scrimmage.
There was no word given on why he did not play.
Even with key players out of the lineup, O’Neal said he feels the team is headed in the right direction.
We have shooters, big guys, slashers, and the king, O’Neal said. I’ve been around the block, but, on paper, this is a damn good team.