IN THE LANE
Fine mess: Still on paternity leave when teammate Josh Richardson tossed his sneaker into the crowd during the loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, eventually fined $25,000 by the NBA, Heat guard Dwyane Wade said he consoled Richardson upon his return. “I just told him, ‘Welcome to the $25,000 fine club. You’ve made it, son. And we’ve all been there before. So just move on.’ “Wade had been fined $25,000 by the NBA at the start of his 2016-17 tenure with the Chicago Bulls for a throat-slashing gesture after draining a decisive 3-pointer against the Boston Celtics. Wade said it was difficult to be away amid the Heat’s freefall. “It’s very tough. You watch J-Rich throw his shoe, you know the frustration,” he said. “And that’s what losing brings and it’s unfortunate that you can’t be there. I would rather be in the locker room when they’re losing, because that’s the time we all get to look each other in the eye and tell each other, ‘Hey, it’s going to be all right.’ “ Far different: LeBron James’ Wednesday return to Cleveland with the Los Angeles Lakers was nothing like his return with the Heat after leaving in 2010 free agency. The entire process was so reserved that James did not even catch the entire Cavaliers tribute video that was played during a first-quarter timeout of the Lakers’ victory. “I had to pay attention slightly,” he said. “I didn’t want to miss that and mess up the play coming out of timeout. But I was able to catch some of it at the end.” It was a decided contrast to what he had to endure in 2010. “It’s all about growth and we all have grown from that moment eight years ago,” James said. “So I kind of leave the past in the past and always focus on the present and see what happens in the future.” Civic duty: Jarnell Stokes and DeAndre Liggins, both cut at the end of Heat training camp, have been summoned by USA Basketball to represent the national team during World Cup qualifying games Thursday in Argentina and Dec. 1 in Uruguay. The assignment is part of the approach of using G League players during qualifying before NBA players when the World Cup in China opens Aug. 31. Liggins had been playing for the Heat’s G League affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, which added Marcus Posley to fill in during Liggins’ absence. Stokes, whose G League rights are held by the Skyforce, has been sitting out while deliberating options that could include playing in China. Two other players in the limbo between the NBA and G League also are on the USA Basketball roster, Eric Moreland and Tyler Zeller. The United States stands at 7-1 in its qualifying group, tied for first place with Argentina. Another chance: Initially presumed to be headed to Israel after being cut at the end of the San Antonio Spurs’ training camp, Okaro White instead has surfaced with the Washington Wizards. The former Florida State forward was dealt by the Heat to the Atlanta Hawks for Luke Babbitt at last season’s February trading deadline while still recovering from the broken foot sustained in November. He subsequently was signed by the Cleveland Cavaliers, with his action with the Cavs limited to summer league. In order to minimize their tax bill, the Wizards appear to be going two weeks at a time with a 14th roster player in order to meet NBA minimum roster-size requirements.