The Cavaliers star, who was playing his 1,082nd game against the Miami Heat, was tossed out with less than two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
He'd just drove to the basket and missed a shot, but believed he was fouled so he started arguing with the referee.
And while James may be wondering about the competition, his coach isn’t losing sleep over the 41/2 games between the Cavaliers and the first-place Celtics in the East.
Le Bron James was ejected from a game for the first time in his 15-year career as a professional basketball player.
'I got fouled and showed my frustration to the ref, and he sent me to the locker room,' James told ESPN. We got the win, and that's what's important.' He told NBA TV just after the game that he'd never been thrown out of a game in his life. 'They always say there's a first time for everything.
'I got fouled all the way up the court, from the time that I stripped him, all the way until I got to the rim.'I said what I had to say and then I moved on. Tonight was the night.'He said he's made similar comments to referees in the past that haven't gotten him thrown out.
But while Cleveland showed proper respect, you have to wonder if this game will have much of an echo. And because no matter the situation, the Cavaliers don’t seem daunted in the least.
'Immediately after the no-call, he turned and threw and air-punch directly at me and then he aggressively charged at me and then he used vulgarity in my ear a few times,' he told reporters.
The Cavaliers head coach Ty Lue said he agrees with Fitzerald's decision to throw him out.
But while it’s best not to read too much into the Celtics’ 102-88 victory over the three-time defending Eastern Conference champions Wednesday night, Le Bron James wasn’t going to just let it slide, either. “Listen,” said Le Bron, “they played at a high level and they’ve been playing extremely well at home – and on the road at times, as well – so they just gave us a good one.” As for how different the Celts looked from the season-opening meeting in Cleveland, James said, “I mean, everybody looks different at this point in the season, so it’s not a surprise.” But it may have caught a few people off guard that Kyrie Irving had just 11 points, making 5 of 14 shots (0 of 5 on 3-pointers), and pulling in nine rebounds to go with six assists.
“Their defense was very good,” he said after scoring 19 points in of play, his shortest stint since the last week of November. But they had a good defensive plan and they executed it very well.” The Cavs took 32 3-pointers and missed 24 of them. With the exception of going scoreless in against Charlotte before getting his face fractured, he tied his season ebb.
“They were very in tune to what we wanted to do execution-wise offensively. James was asked about Irving being more of a distributor and whether there has been growth in that side of his game. He’s getting more and more confident every single year.