Thursday, November 28th, 2013 at 10:30 am  |  36 responses

Dion Waiters Reportedly Accused Kyrie Irving of Not Passing Him the Ball

by Marcel Mutoni @ marcel_mutoni

Earlier this month, the sputtering Cleveland Cavaliers held a players-only meeting that turned heated.

Players confronted each other, and according to ESPN, Dion Waiters — who is reportedly on the trade block — ignited things by calling out Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson for playing “buddy ball”:

Waiters, whom the Cavaliers drafted with the No. 4 pick in 2012, has a contentious relationship with several teammates, including star point guard Kyrie Irving, and sources say he is open to being traded. In fact, although Waiters has not demanded a trade, he brought up the subject in a three-hour meeting last week with coach Mike Brown and general manager Chris Grant, according to sources.

Sources described the following account: Irving called the meeting after the game, and every player spoke. When Waiters was given the floor, he criticized Thompson and Irving, accusing them of playing “buddy ball” and often refusing to pass to him. Thompson took umbrage with Waiters’ words and went back at him verbally. The two confronted each other, but teammates intervened before it could escalate into a fight.

Dion Waiters, according to the report, feels that Kyrie Irving is allowed by the Cavs coaches to get away with taking bad shots and loafing on defense.

He scored 24 points in a 95-84 loss to the Miami Heat last night, and Waiters denied any source of tension with his star teammate. He also said that he’s happy in Cleveland. Per the News-Herald:

He disputed the reported “three-hour meeting” he supposedly had with Cavs general manager Chris Grant. “That’s nonsense,” he said. He said he doesn’t want to be traded anywhere. “I’m happy,” Waiters said. “I’m not happy we’re losing. But I’m happy here.”

The Cavs are said to have reached out to New York, Chicago and Philly about the second-year shooting guard.

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  • i_ball

    I watched the Jalen Rose podcast yesterday. He made one really good point that applies to the this situation: Good teams have chemistry, they don’t point fingers.

  • Saleem Rainman

    meh, why not waiters for turner? Philly probably isnt keepin turner after refusing to extend him…

  • melvo

    Turner doesn’t play well if he doesn’t have the ball in his hands. He might be ineffective on the Cavs…or any other team that has an established PG.

  • Yeezus

    Someone please explain what is buddy ball..

  • fruizm

    Its when you play ball with your buddy…


    MCW has full control over the PG position at Philly, so Turner doesn’t really need the ball in his hands. But I still don’t like this trade scenario, I like Waiters and Irving being a dominant duo in the backcourt and I like MCW and Evans being a duo. I think this is an issue they are going to have to work out for themselves….And stop with the “buddy ball”. LOL.
    However, I agree with Waiters in that Irving shouldn’t be allowed to take bad shots at the detriment of the team or be lackadaisical on the defensive end either. He’s not an All-Star….YET. If they want to win games, it is not going to hinge on one star player. He has to be able to get his teammates involved. Plus, I respect the fact that Waiters went 7-14 from the field for 24 points after this meeting allegedly took place. At least he can back it up. At least he didn’t complain about not getting the ball and when he gets it, go 2-16 or 3-11 from the field.

  • Saleem Rainman

    yeah…the whole waiters and irving being a dominant duo thing isnt exactly working out. especially considering once punched out the other, and almost picked a fight with a second dude thats part of their core as well…hence he;s being shopped around. Its beyond just “buddy ball”

  • wise crack not needed

    you play with your buddy’s balls

  • spit hot fiyah

    let’s post it again:

    kyrie: “what u ‘gon do ’bout it dion?!”

    dion: “mike tyson yo @ss!!!”


  • burnt_chicken

    it’s easy to have chemistry when you are winning. Losing teams have to ‘point fingers’–it’s an exercise in helping your teammates become self-aware of tendencies they may not know that they are expressing. I haven’t watched many cavs games-maybe he has a point? calling someone out for bad shots and shoddy defense does not exactly screams selfishness…

  • i_ball

    The Spurs didn’t point finger when the lost the Finals even though it was clear the Manu should have played better and Pop made an error. The Heat weren’t pointing fingers when they lost the Finals to Dallas and so on…

    And I think loosing the Finals is much more devastating than loosing any amount of regular season games

  • Jerome

    This is another really bad headline from the SLAM decision makers.

    You’re welcome.

  • mike

    it’s when you take preference to passing mostly to the player’s on your team you have a friendship or a closer relationship with , often times not really looking to for the other guys

  • burnt_chicken

    Lebron called DWade “the worst finisher in the League’. last year. When they went on to beat your aforementioned Spurs. Jordan routinely called out teammates in an effort to keep them honest. Jordan, of course, won several championships with this approach. And so on. ‘Pointing fingers’, if handled maturely by both parties, is actually a way to avoid the devastation of losing Finals by highlighting weaknesses within your squad before someone else finds and exploits them.

  • JL

    It’s selfishness when he’s a terrible shooter. He’s saying well I’m shooting 39.9 pct on the season. I want more shots. You guys don’t pass it to me. New flash Mr. Waiters. 39.9pct shooting gets your team losses, not wins. It’s not about you getting shots, it’s about the team making shots.

  • JL

    Sad thing is that Turner right now is light years better than Waiters (and that’s not saying tooooo much). I’m still scratching my head on the Waiters, Thompson, and Bennett picks. If you’re going to reach for every lottery pick, why not just trade down? Seriously.

  • Basketball_iQ

    All I can think about is they drafted him #4, Klay Thompson, a perfect fit with a Kyrie went #10. Dumb owner got the hex on him.

  • Basketball_iQ

    Disagree fully with you on this one brotha,,,,,
    pointing fingerd only creates friction and leads to team destruction.

  • Tobias Fernandez

    This is what happens when u have a young team. Look at the Wizards a couple years ago, the Kings still now.

  • TV63

    He’s a better 3 point shooter almost at 41%. He has less turnovers than Kyrie. News flash he’s the third best shooter on the team . He plays harder and wants more accountability for all team mates who play poor defense. Kyrie always gets a pass and is overdribbling and losing the ball way too much. Have you watched every game because if you did you would see what all of us see. Kyrie DOES NOT pass the ball to Dion when he should. Dion has always been a more willing passer. He’s not selfish at all but rather wants more accountibilty for all his team mates including not so perfect Irving.

  • JL

    What’s going on with Irving? He’s having a crap season. Yes Waiters is a very good 3pt shooter this season, but he is not a 3pt shooter only. There’re 9 attempts a game that he doesn’t shoot well on. But you do have me at not watching Cavs games. I’m not saying Irving is perfect (in fact I didn’t mention him at all), but Waiters this year is shooting 39.9 FG%, 40.9 3′s, and 64% FT. Irving’s not doing that great either.

    I think the main issue is Mike Brown not understanding how to utilize his players in a good offense.

  • Shooting Guard

    hHAHAHAHAH you’re killing me

  • i_ball

    Before you accuse your teammates you should look at yourself and correct your weaknesses. I don’t think Waiters is doing that and I don’t think the Cavs can handle this maturely:

    “The two confronted each other, but teammates intervened before it could escalate into a fight.”

  • LP @ThisisEther

    are you saying Kyrie isnt’ an all star??? because he is.

  • Saleem Rainman

    Yeeah their drafting process has been pretty head scratching for me too…

  • dwade flops so hard

    I am a philly fan who wants no part of dion waiters

  • Kadavour

    the Cavs need a 6’3 – 6’7 guy who can guard 2s, and move the ball around the court and get guys involved. Kyrie is a scorer, forcing the role of playmaker devalues his potential. maybe move Jarrett Jack in the starting line up and get someone else for Waiters.

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  • Tarzan Cooper

    i dont understand why so many people had high expectations for the cavs. they didnt get better really. kyrie is overrated. bennett looks like a total waste. who drafts a 6th man in college in the top 5? cavs are doomed.

  • DC95

    Once Kyrie realize he’s the POINT guard not the SHOOTING guard then the Cavs will be a threat in the East!

  • brandonJ

    dion waiters seemed to step his game up the last couple games

  • Caboose

    “Kyrie Irving is allowed by the Cavs coaches to get away with taking bad shots and loafing on defense.” No sh!t.

  • MasterSplinter

    The only extremely young team to ever do anything in the NBA in the last like 10 years was the Thunder who lost in the finals…. You can’t build your team around an extremely young flashy aggressive point guard. It has NEVER worked in the last decade. I really like Kyrie, but his coaching staff and organization is doing him a dis-service. He needs to watch some Chris Paul video (not that Paul has won anything)….. But that is what he has the talent for…. he just doesn’t have that leadership… and decision-making skills that make his team so much better… Kyrie has all the tools, he just needs to try and break that new school point guard thing going on. Magic was the last flashy point guard to win a championship, but he was much more, and did his scoring differently. Give me a quiet, and less publicized Tony Parker…a quiet but effective Damion Lillard…Stephon Curry (healthy)…Chris Paul…Or a Rondo. Kyrie is trying to be a better John Wall that gets less dimes.

  • Caboose

    Uhh, you’d rather have Damian Lillard over John Wall? Did I read that right?

  • MasterSplinter

    Absolutely….Absolutely yes

  • MasterSplinter

    John Wall will get you some stats (just a little bit more)… but if you want your team to win, and to build good chemistry, you want Lillard….I got less stats then other guards in high school and college that I knew I was better than, but winning was the ultimate goal. John Wall is talented, but he will never be the best player on a contender.