LeBron James Says Suspension After Hard Foul Wasn’t Warranted

After this first game back since being suspended by the NBA because of a blow he delivered to the face of Detroit Pistons’ center Isaiah Stewart as the two fought for a rebound, Lakers superstar LeBron James addressed the incident. Stewart and James were both ejected after the contest. Stewart was given a two-game suspension.

“I think it warranted an ejection because of what [might have] happened after that,”James spoke tonight. “You know, with me still in the game and excitement from the fans and what could possibly happen after that, obviously, but a suspension, I didn’t think it was warranted.”

The incident became the talk of sports radio and fodder for an entire news cycle on ESPN, with the network’s biggest star, Stephen A. Smith, creating his own whirlwind with comments about James. The suspension also removed the NBA’s marquee star from a nationally-televised matchup on TNT Tuesday night between the Lakers and the New York Knicks, the premiere teams in the nation’s two biggest television markets.

James stated that Stewart was his victim in the Stewart incident. “off balance a little bit, and his elbow lifted my arm…and I basically tried to swing down on him, on his arm. And when I swing down on his arm, he got off balance and the side of my hand, you know, grazed his face.”

“I knew right away I had caught some part of his head, so I went over to apologize to him and, obviously, you guys see what happened after that.”

The Lakers star was the one to blame. “definitely accidental…Just like Sabonis’ play tonight.”

It was a reference at Indiana Pacers center Domantas Samonis, with whom James spent much time Wednesday evening banging on bodies with under the basket. James gestured toward a butterfly bandage, a cut that was higher than his right eye, as he made his point about Sabonis. “accidental hit to the eye.”

“I’m definitely not that type of player,”He continued. “I hate to see that and whatever happened after that.”

“Whatever happened after that”The melee was intense, with Stewart trying repeatedly to force his will on the coaches, teammates, and refs to get at James.

Both benches quickly became involved and players tried to either end the conflict or engage in it.

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