Nazr Mohammed had a grown-up take on the Bulls' physical play against Miami on Wednesday and LeBron James' postgame complaints.
"I've been around long enough to know, when the guys on your team keep getting hit, it always looks harder and worse than when he's on the other team and you're doing the hitting or someone else is doing the hitting," Mohammed said Friday at the Berto Center.
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"So definitely if I was a teammate of his, I'd feel for his side of it, but I'm not. I'm an opponent. As an opponent, I think it was just nice, hard fouls or hard basketball. It was definitely more physical when I first came into the league."
The controversy has faded, but it was certainly national news when the Bulls ended Miami's 27-game winning streak with a 101-97 victory at the United Center.
James addressed some of the backlash his comments created at Friday's shootaround in New Orleans.
"I stated what I felt and I left it at that," James said, according the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "I know that everything I say is going to be either blown out of proportion or taken the wrong way. But I had to say what I had to say and move on."
Added Heat coach Erik Spoelstra: "We'll have our guys' backs, but we don't need anybody's help and we're not afraid of anybody's game plan against us."
Mavs' shave delayed:
A couple months ago, a group of Dallas Mavericks vowed not to shave until they got back to .500.
They had a chance to get there Thursday and the team brought in a guy named Omar the Barber to do some shaving if the Mavs won. The clippers never came out, though, as Dallas was blown out by Indiana 103-78.
After some concern that the barber talk fired up the Pacers, Dallas coach Rick Carlisle has put a moratorium on beard discussions, according to ESPN Dallas. Now two games below .500, the Mavs won't break even against the Bulls on Saturday, anyway.
Among the players participating are Dirk Nowitzki, Chris Kaman, O.J. Mayo and Vince Carter.
"Hopefully they can get going and get rid of (the beards)," Indiana forward David West said. "None of them look good."
At the Berto Center on Friday, coach Tom Thibodeau's message was to forget all about Wednesday's streak-busting win over Miami and put all the focus on Dallas, which had won nine of 12 games before losing to the Pacers.
"They got off to a slow start because of injuries," Thibodeau said. "Nowitzki, he's as tough a cover as there is in this league, so we have to be ready when the ball goes up."
The Bulls signed forward Malcolm Thomas to a second 10-day contract on Friday. His only game action was 21 seconds at the end of the first half against Miami on Wednesday. ... Dallas guard O.J. Mayo had an MRI on his left shoulder Friday, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. His status for the Bulls on Saturday is unknown.