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#pounditFriday, January 22, 2021

Articles tagged: LeBron James

Rockets coach did not like LeBron James’ disrespectful act

LeBron James no look

Houston Rockets coach Stephen Silas did not enjoy LeBron James’ disrespectful act during Tuesday night’s game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

James’ Lakers were up big early against the Rockets and won 117-100. They were up by around 20 in the second quarter when James attempted a 3-pointer from the corner. Before the shot got to the basket, James turned his back on the ball to face his teammates. He was prematurely celebrating because he believed the ball was going in.

Silas found that to be disrespectful and said it “doesn’t feel good at all.”

There are some players with the Rockets who would want to send a message after something like that. But the hard part is their star player isn’t invested and wants out.

LeBron James trolls Dabo Swinney for ranking Ohio State No. 11

LeBron James

Even LeBron James isn’t letting Dabo Swinney get away with his Ohio State ranking.

As the Buckeyes were beating Clemson en route to a 49-28 win in the Sugar Bowl on Friday night, James said he was looking forward to hearing what Swinney had to say about his Ohio State ranking.

Swinney notoriously ranked Ohio State No. 11 in his final coaches’ poll. Swinney argued that his ranking wasn’t a reflection of how good he felt Ohio State was, but rather a penalty for playing only six games.

James is from Ohio and a big Buckeyes fan. He was among many Ohio State fans to feel disrespected by the ranking.

Even after his team got trounced, and even after it was clear the Buckeyes were motivated by a feeling of disrespect, Swinney still stood by his rankings for the same reason.

LeBron James, wife lash out over Bronny James-Larsa Pippen story

Larsa Pippen

Larsa Pippen has been involved in plenty of drama within the NBA community in recent months, but LeBron James and his wife Savannah want their son to be left out of it.

A story from Black Sports Online over the weekend called attention to Bronny James, LeBron and Savannah’s 16-year-old son, liking one of Pippen’s photos on Instagram. The story has since been edited or removed, but it did not sit well with any of the parties who were mentioned. Savannah unloaded on her Instagram story.

“With everything going on in the world right now, this is the s— y’all talking about,” she wrote. “At the end of the day y’all are talking about a minor. I don’t care what type of ‘celebrity’ y’all think he is, he’s a child and the bulls— needs to stop. Y’all got the right one.”

LeBron then re-posted what his wife wrote and added some of his own commentary.

“Uh-oh y’all f—ed with the wrong one now! Good luck. It won’t be cute!” LeBron wrote.

Bronny and Pippen also shot back. Pippen threatened to “sue the f— out of” BSO in a tweet and accused the site of publishing “disgusting lies.” Bronny called the story “childish.”

Pippen, the ex-wife of Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen, was at the center of some NBA drama recently when she was spotted holding hands with Minnesota Timberwolves star Malik Beasley. Beasley is married, but his wife has filed for divorce. More allegations have since surfaced that Beasley was involved with a third woman, and a leaked email chain seemed to confirm that.

Bronny James plays at Sierra Canyon High School in California. He’s considered one of the top recruiting prospects for the Class of 2023.

Three takeaways from opening night in the NBA

Kyrie Irving

After the shortest offseason in league history, the NBA is officially back. And while there is still the remainder of a 72-game regular season yet to be played, teams only get one chance to make a first impression. Here are some of the biggest takeaways from the first night of action in the association.

Brooklyn Nets have a chance to be special

Heading into the season, the Brooklyn Nets were a popular choice as the team most likely to finish atop the Eastern Conference. During their first game of the season, they justified their burgeoning bandwagon. Kyrie Irving continued his tradition of opening night onslaughts, following last year’s 50-point performance by dropping 24 in the first half. Although Irving only scored 2 points in the second half, that was largely because his services were not required in the later stages of the blowout, as he finished the game playing just 25 minutes. As impressive as Irving was, it was Kevin Durant’s return and the fluidity in which he moved that has Brooklyn firmly in the championship discussion.


There is no defense for a player who is nearly 7 feet tall and can dance with the basketball, then elevate into a picturesque pull-up jumper as depicted above. Coming off a devastating Achilles injury, Durant looked like his former self attacking the defense. While there was little doubt that the former four-time scoring champion would still be able to light it up offensively, there were some questions about how Durant would fare on the other side of the floor. Embracing the shift to power forward, Durant’s defensive impact was profound, as he limited Golden State shooters to 2-13 shooting as the primary defender.

The Nets have assembled a talented roster around their two superstars, with Caris LeVert spearheading a versatile bench unit. Even without Durant and Irving last season, Brooklyn still made the playoffs, with many of the team’s key contributors returning in reduced roles for this season. Although it was just one game, there is no denying that top to bottom, the Nets have assembled one of the most talented, cohesive rosters in the NBA.

The reigning champs are easing their way into the season

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LeBron James shouts out Trey Sermon after record-setting day

LeBron James

You know you’ve made it when LeBron James is shouting you out on Twitter, and that’s what happened to Ohio State running back Trey Sermon on Saturday.

Sermon, typically the Buckeyes’ No. 2 back, was pushed into the spotlight after Master Teague went down with an early injury after two carries. The Oklahoma transfer answered the call, rushing for 331 yards on 29 carries and adding two touchdowns. Not only did that break the record for most rushing yards in the Big Ten Championship, it actually broke the Ohio State single-game rushing record previously set by Eddie George in 1995.

Let’s just say James, a well-known Ohio State fan, was happy.

Safe to say that James would have been okay with it if Sermon had done his celebration, unlike this instance a few years back.

LeBron James had funny reaction to earlier start of new season

LeBron James

LeBron James is getting his shortest NBA offseason ever, and the quick turnaround certainly came as a surprise to him.

The Los Angeles Lakers star told reporters on Monday that he had quite the reaction to finding out that the new season would start on Dec. 22.

“Oh s—,” James said his reaction was, per ESPN’s Dave McMenamin. The reigning Finals MVP also added that he was expecting a mid-January start date and had to cancel a family vacation planned around Christmas.

James and the Lakers won the NBA title on Oct. 11. With training camp already underway, his offseason was effectively less than two months.

Some players were originally pushing for a start date around Martin Luther King Day before eventually agreeing to the Dec. 22 beginning. We know that James was less than pleased with the development, so we will see how much potential load management he does early on in the season.

LeBron James admits he was ‘hurt’ by Kyrie Irving’s comment

LeBron James

LeBron James admitted he was hurt by recent comments from Kyrie Irving.

Irving appeared on Kevin Durant’s podcast for episodes that were released in late September and early October. In his interview with Durant, Irving said he felt like he was always the best option for a team. He felt that way until now, because he is currently teammates with Durant on the Brooklyn Nets.

“One thing I’ve always been comfortable with, I felt like I was the best option on every team I played for down the stretch,” Irving said.

“This is the first time in my career I’ve looked down and be like, ‘That motherf—er can make that shot too.’ And he’ll probably do it a lot easier,” Irvin told Durant.

“It’s not so much deferring, because in past situations where I didn’t take the last shot I felt guilty. I want this game-winning shot, but also you want to trust your teammates. Not that I didn’t trust my teammates, but I felt like I was the best option.”

This is not necessarily a shot at LeBron, but it shows how Irving felt: he thinks he was better than James when they were teammates on the Cavaliers, even though they won a championship.

James always wanted to hand the keys in Cleveland over to Irving after he left for Los Angeles, but things didn’t work out that way because Irving demanded out first. Irving forced a trade to Boston and then eventually left the Celtics for the Nets.

Recently, James appeared on former teammate Richard Jefferson’s “Road Trippin'” podcast for an interview. The interview was a two-part episode, and the second part was released on Monday. In that part, the Los Angeles Lakers star said he asked to read the full transcript of Irving’s comments. Once he read the whole thing, he says he was bothered.

“It kind of hurt me a little,” James says. “The whole time while I was there, I only wanted to see him be an MVP. I only cared about his success … and it just didn’t align.”

Even though Irving asked out of Cleveland, he later realized how hard it was to be a leader and apologized to James. Still, this is further proof of how unrealistic Irving is. It’s no wonder James felt hurt by the comments. How could he not be?

All that talk a few years ago about a rift between the players seems real, though more one-sided.

LeBron James explains reasoning behind his Lakers extension

LeBron James

LeBron James had two years remaining on his previous contract when he signed a two-year extension with the Los Angeles Lakers last week. Many immediately pointed out that his current deal with the team now expires in 2023, which is when his son Bronny is set to graduate high school. That is not a coincidence.

LeBron spoke with the media on Monday about his new contract, and he confirmed that he wanted to have flexibility for when Bronny graduates, according to Kyle Goon of the Southern California New Group. Of course, LeBron has also mentioned in the past that he wants to play in the NBA with his son, and Bronny could be eligible for the NBA Draft in 2023 if the league and NBPA change the rules for high schoolers turning pro.

James probably could have signed any deal he wanted with the Lakers, and there was no need for him to make a decision this offseason. Both he and Anthony Davis signed longer contracts than many expected them to, and LeBron said that is an illustration of how committed the two superstars are to the Lakers.

The deals LeBron and Davis signed have an interesting consequence for the Lakers, as they now may be out of the running for a certain superstar player.

LeBron will turn 39 in the final year of his new contract, so it’s entirely possible it will be the last one he signs.

Lakers fans, show everyone who runs LA with this great T-shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.

LeBron James has hot take about his bubble championship

LeBron James

Having been victorious in the Orlando bubble, LeBron James can safely say that the title came with very different challenges from his previous one.

The Los Angeles Lakers superstar appeared this week on the “Road Trippin'” podcast with former Cleveland Cavaliers teammates Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye. During the episode, James said that the Golden State Warriors might have thrashed the Cavs in 2016 in a bubble setting.

“Just imagine in ’16,” said James. “We’re down 3-1 [in the series]. If we’re down 3-1 in ’16, and we’re not going back to Cleveland? We’re just playing another game in the bubble? Golden State may beat us by 100.”

Recall that in 2016, the Cavaliers won Game 5 in Golden State, returned to Cleveland to win Game 6, and went back to Golden State to take Game 7 and the title. James has also stated that he likes the adversity of playing on the road and feeding off the hostility of the away crowd.

The Orlando bubble was certainly a unique experience, forcing teams to fight playoff battles with no crowd, no travel, and no homecourt advantage. James was also vocal about the struggles of staying sane in the bubble, so it is safe to say that he is probably especially proud of the 2020 championship.

LeBron James signing contract extension has interesting consequence for Lakers

LeBron James

LeBron James on Wednesday agreed to a two-year contract extension with the Los Angeles Lakers, which is good news for the team. But it does have one other consequence and will likely put some rumors to rest.

Anthony Davis is a free agent and still has not signed a new deal with the Lakers. One theory for why he hadn’t yet signed was that he was waiting to see what Giannis Antetokounmpo did first. The thinking is that if Giannis did not commit to the Milwaukee Bucks long term, Davis and James would take less money to make room for Antetokounmpo on the Lakers.

But with James agreeing to a two-year, $85 million extension with the Lakers, the chances of that happening are reduced. The Lakers would have less money available for free agents next offseason and would need Giannis and Davis each to take about $5.6 million less than their max amount in order to make it happen.

So the consequence to LeBron taking max money is that it takes the Lakers out of the running for Giannis, unless Antetokounmpo and AD take reduced pay. Maybe Giannis is planning to re-sign with the Bucks anyway, which would make this entire scenario moot.

Lakers fans, show everyone who runs LA with this great T-shirt. It makes a perfect gift for you or a friend. You can buy it here.