With just over two minutes remaining in the first half, LeBron James isolated and drove against defender Myles Turner. As James made his way along the baseline, Turner’s Pacers teammate, Thaddeus Young, slid over to pick up LeBron before he could make it to the basket. As he rotated over, hands high, James tried to maneuver around him and whip a pass into the far corner. As he did that, the left side of his face collided with Young’s elbow:
Young hit the deck from the force of the contact, while James stayed standing. He did, however, quickly reach for his left eye, covering his face and leaning on the basket stanchion before dropping to the court himself.
The Cavs’ trainers came out to check on him, and after a brief evaluation, decided he was good to go after a minor patch-up that called to mind one of the great popular music artists of yesteryear:
After reviewing the play, the referees called the contact incidental, and decided Young shouldn’t receive any penalty for bloodying the King. James remained in the game, finishing the first half with 14 points, five assists, three rebounds and a steal. Despite his efforts, though, the Pacers took a 57-47 lead into intermission, thanks in large part to a strong bounce-back performance by Victor Oladipo, who put up 18 points on 7-for-9 shooting with six rebounds, four assists and four steals in the first two quarters.
The Cavs, then, have some work to do after the break if they want to make up the difference and get into position to avoid heading back to Cleveland for a winner-take-all Game 7. Looks like LeBron’s going to have to draw some inspiration from his man Ben Stiller, star of the Oscar-winning (probably) film “Dodgeball.”
Then again, maybe that’s not the operative pop cultural reference here.
"If it bleeds, we can kill it." –Lance Stephenson, Predator pic.twitter.com/OZHLlJJBbd
— Shea Serrano (@SheaSerrano) April 28, 2018
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