LeBron: “That Play Was Borderline Dirty”
There are few players in the NBA who can confidently say their defensive abilities are up to the task of stepping in front of the freight train that is LeBron James when he charges toward the hoop in hopes to derail his drives. But even if it means taking a foul, it’s always a better idea to do what it takes to stop him than to let him get easy baskets. In this case, Washington’s Jason Collins clotheslines James right in the chest, sending him to the floor.
The shock of the impact looked like it had to affect James somewhat, but there is a bit of acting going on here. James grabs his face as if he got hit there, when in fact there was no facial contact whatsoever. And judging by Collins’ immediate reaction to the hit, it doesn’t look like he intended to foul James as hard as he did.
It was a hard foul, certainly. But dirty? That’s tough to argue. Collins may have had a knee-jerk reaction in his brain to throw an arm in front of James as he barreled through the lane, something many defenders may do in his situation. There was no follow-through, no evil stare from Collins; it was simply very hard contact.
LeBron should know that plays like this are going to happen when he ventures down the center of the court toward the hoop. As one of the best players in the World, he should know he won’t get many free passes, if any at all. And he should really look at the video before making any remarks about “dirty” hits. He’s smart for using the word “borderline” to soften up his accusation, though.
The video is right here; be your own judge.
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