It has been 15 years, 1,299 total games played, and 51,147 minutes played for Lebron James before his first ever ejection which occurred on Tuesday night during the third quarter of the Cavs vs Heat game. He was ejected for arguing a no-call in the third quarter. He finished the game with 21 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, and five steals.
Lebron has become progressively animated when foul calls are not called in his favor or even at all, especially when he feels deserving. Although, for him to receive an ejection is quite shocking given his understanding that his team needs him on the court almost all 48 minutes of the game.
Lebron holds a reputation of being one of the more mature players in the league although no level of maturity can handle 15-years of excessive abuse as a consistent slasher in the NBA. There’s a reason why players have to learn to develop an outside shot in the league if they want longevity in their career but considering Lebron is half man half-tank he gets a pass on his outside jumper lacking the development throughout his career to be brought up amongst the best in the league today. As much as Lebron attacks the basket, most would think he would gain more foul calls. This season, Lebron is averaging a career-low 5.4 free throw attempts while attempting nine field goals within the restricted area which is the second highest average for Lebron in his career.
To be quite honest, Lebron receiving an ejection is not exactly a surprise given the way he can animate his frustration towards referees when they don’t blow a whistle in his favor. The shocker was more so that it took the referees 15 years before dealing with enough of Lebron’s grumbling over no-calls. Lebron vs NBA refs seems to be an occurring topic each season with Lebron automatically being an everyday topic mixed with players and coaches across the league provoking the case for better officiating making it inevitable for the two storylines to cross paths and intertwine.
Kevin Love led the way for the Cavs to a 108-97 victory with a remarkable performance scoring 38 points while grabbing nine rebounds along the way despite losing James late in the third quarter. Usually when a player has a stellar game like the one Love exhibited Tuesday, it’s the headline and main highlight of that game but that wasn’t the case due to Lebron’s first ever ejection.