If James Harden had thrown a punch at LeBron James, there would have been no question that he would have been suspended for at least one game. Why should a kick be any different?
In the league’s eyes, it wasn’t.
The league suspended Harden one game for the incident you see in the video above. Harden will miss Tuesday’s game when the Rockets take on the Hawks.
The play happened with 2:08 left in the third quarter of what had become a physical, chippy, playoff-style game. LeBron was pressuring Harden, who had the ball out by the top of the arc. When Harden picked up his dribble, LeBron came in trying to get a jump ball. Harden fell to the ground, and while there Harden kicked up at LeBron catching him in the… King’s jewels, shall we say.
It was intentional, it deserved a suspension.