That was a pretty minor play in this game — in the fourth quarter the Heat were on a fast break and, as they have done all series long, the Bulls tried to go with the “Euro foul” out at midcourt before the play developed to break it up.
Except, nothing is minor when Nate Robinson and LeBron James are involved.
Robinson made the foul and in doing so his hand slid up and caught LeBron James in the face. LeBron’s head snapped back. The refs called the foul a flagrant one to review it.
And on twitter, it was on — there was a large “look at LeBron flop again” contingent. LeBron’s reaction seemed exaggerated to the relatively minor contact. The people who don’t like LeBron are always lurking just beneath the surface online and this series — where Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau accused LeBron of flopping on the Nazr Mohammed shove — brought them out like cicadas. Complete with all the chirping.
They said LeBron embellished that contact. They went to the flop card.
Yes, LeBron’s head snapped back. What is your instinctive reaction when somebody hits you in the face? You pull your head back. Decide for yourself how exaggerated it was.
In the end, the refs got this right; they changed the call to a common foul. Which it was. There was no intent to injure, no intent to go to the face, and LeBron’s reaction was not out of line. It was a playoff foul and play. Everybody play on.
Of course, it never goes quite like that on twitter.