The Cleveland Cavaliers are the top dogs in the Eastern Conference, which makes them the most likely contenders to go against the Golden State Warriors if both continue to dominate their divisions. However, cheating rumors are now circulating about the success of the Kyrie Irving squad. As the NBA playoffs 2016 heat up, execs are pointing out the flaws in the calls of the referees during games and are noting a partiality on a particular player - LeBron James. Is the former Miami Heat star only great because of these "cheating" tactics?
The recent game against the Detroit Pistons, which saw the Cleveland Cavaliers walk away with a 101-106 win, revealed the "cheating" rumors linked with LeBron James. While the former Miami Heat star is known as one of the best players in the league today - with some comparing him to Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan, some NBA fans feel that one of the reasons for his greatness is his influence on the referees. That is, James is said to be getting a more favorable treatment from the refs simply because of his reputation.
"A couple calls have upset our guys," said Stan Van Gundy after the game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. The Detroit Pistons head coach added, "They've got to understand, LeBron's LeBron. They're not going to call offensive fouls on him. He gets to do whatever he wants. They've got to understand that."
The same observations were made by other members of the Detroit Pistons roster. Stanley Johnson, a rookie, described the rough play he had against LeBron James in the said game. According to the 19-year-old, the Cleveland Cavaliers star attempted to manhandle him by throwing him to the floor.
"It's LeBron. That's the explanation (for the call)," shared Johnson of the whistle he got after his encounter with James. He added, "I already knew what time it was, but I didn't think it was going to be a blatant foul like that. It wasn't a foul, it was physical basketball. On the other end, when I get an opportunity to throw him on the ground, it is what it is. He would do the same to me."
While the hardwood court antics of LeBron earned the ire of his fellow players, it looks like some sports analysts feel that the Cleveland Cavaliers star still lacks the aggression that could make him great. According to Frank Brickowski, a former NBA star, King James has yet to reach the level of Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan on the court. He shared that James lacks the "killer instinct" of the said great stars - the quality he would need if he intends to dominate the NBA some day.
"I don't think he has the killer instinct," noted Brickowski of LeBron. He added, "I think he wants to. I think he pretends sometimes. I would love to see him be more of a guy like Kobe, who just wants to slit your throat."