Kobe’s Performance Unfairly Hurts Lebron James

June 6, 2009

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As the Lakers and Magic prepped for Game 1 of the NBA Finals, LeBron James was undergoing five hours of dental surgery to remove a benign growth from his right jaw. Which was less painful than the metaphorical dental surgery he had to endure later.

Yes, rarely has a man been so conspicuous by his absence as the King was before, during and after Game 1 at the Staples Center. In the days leading up to the championship series, James had been torched for walking off the court without shaking hands after his Cavs had been eliminated by the Magic in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals, and compounding it by blowing off the mandatory media session.

Then, before Game 1 of the Finals on Thursday, commissioner David Stern announced that he had reversed his initial position and decided to fine James $25,000. Stern indicated that the walkoff and the media blowoff were both factors in the fine, but I don’t buy that. James was fined for skipping the interview session, which is in keeping with precedent.

 

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