Thursday Hotness

  • LeBron James reached out to Heat rook Norris Cole on the phone last week and invited the former Cleveland State point guard to a workout in James' hometown of Akron, Ohio. Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel tells us that this was the first time that two players had communicated since Miami selected Cole in the first-round. Now, your first thought may be, "Why'd it take this long for two Cleveland area guys to meet up?" But then, you find out that James is the first Heat player that Cole has met since getting his name called by David Stern. So there's that.

  • Continuing his tour in Asia, LeBron James walked on stage to David Guetta's "Where Them Girls At" and answered some questions from the audience. James says he's "very optimistic" that the lockout will end in time for the season to be played. Not much to see here, but you can still watch the video via Crossover Chronicles.

  • I don't really know exactly what's going on here, but apparently Dwyane Wade, Chris Paul and Carmelo Anthony participated in a weird basketball dance-off in Beijing (video via Complex). Wade tried to intimidribble all up in a Chinese break dancer's face, but he lost the ball in the process. Cookies!

  • Can the Toronto Raptors overcome the hole left by Chris Bosh? Five experts voice their opinion in Thursday's ESPN.com 5-on-5 roundtable on the Raps. Here's ESPN Insider David Thorpe's take: "It's a tossup until next year. That's when Valanciunas arrives. If he comes in as the heir apparent, or better, then the Raptors will glow in his aura just like OK City did with Kevin Durant despite losing so many games his first two seasons."

  • James Jones is the latest 2010-11 Heat player to appear on ESPN.com's #NBArank. He checks in at No. 266, placing him behind Troy Murphy, Jared Jeffries and Jonny Flynn in the ranking. You know what? I'd rather have Jones.

  • The only Heat-Magic trade in NBA history.