Kareem Abdul-Jabbar was no fan of LeBron James’ flamboyant celebration last week when the NBA superstar helped the Los Angeles Lakers beat the Indiana Pacers.
It was one of James’ last games before he was put into the NBA’s health and safety protocols because of a positive coronavirus test. James would later have subsequent negative tests that allowed him to return to the team.
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INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA – NOVEMBER 24: LeBron James #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers celebrates in the 124-116 OT win against the Indiana Pacers at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on November 24, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana.
(Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
When James hit the shot against the Pacers, he imitated Sam Cassell’s “big balls” dance. Abdul-Jabbar said someone like James shouldn’t be doing those kinds of celebrations.
“For me, winning is enough. Why do you need to do a stupid, childish dance and disrespect the other team on the court? It doesn’t make sense. GOATs don’t dance,” the Basketball Hall of Famer said in a SubStack commentary video on Wednesday.
Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James reacts after hitting a shot during overtime of in the team’s NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers, Wednesday, Nov. 24, 2021, in Indianapolis.
(AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
James earned a $15,000 fine.
The Lakers have struggled this season with a group of veteran players who still have to get used to each other’s style of play. It also didn’t help that James missed a few games due to injury.
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 21: Los Angeles Lakers great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar attends the Los Angeles Lakers and Memphis Grizzlies basketball game at Staples Center on February 21, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.
(Kevork S. Djansezian/Getty Images)
Los Angeles is 12-12 and are sitting in the No. 6 slot in the Western Conference just ahead of the Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Minnesota Timberwolves and Portland Trail Blazers.
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The Lakers are 4-6 in their last 10 games.