An old video of the Cavs bench flipping bottles during a game against the Knicks has resurfaced, and NBA Reddit is not amused.
Ah, 2016. A time when flipping water bottles was a thing, and nearly everyone owned a fidget spinner. Hence, it isn’t surprising that the fad crept into the NBA circles as well. What could be wrong with athletes participating in a bottle flip on live TV?
The fans are having none of it, however.
In the video, the Cavs bench featuring LeBron James and Kyrie Irving could be seen having a blast while flipping bottles. Why were the two best players on the team sitting on the bench during the dying minutes of the 4th quarter?
Well, the scoreline tells you the story. The Knicks were getting trucked by the Cavs 123-92 in the game. NBA Reddit, however, was still not impressed and was quick to deem the incident unsportsmanlike.
LeBron James was reportedly furious on a remark about his entourage made by then Knicks president Phil Jackson.
There’s more to the story here, apparently. Phil Jackson, one of the most successful coaches in NBA history, had apparently made a snide remark about LeBron’s associates. He had referred to them as his “posse”, which was not an acceptable term for the superstar.
Rumors suggest this was a reason why the 4-time champ wanted to make a statement in the Garden.
When Richard Jefferson, who can be seen in the video, was asked about the incident on ESPN’s The Jump, he implied the team was just bored. They wanted to assert their dominance in front of the packed MSG crowd and had even partied the day before the game.
The Cavs proved to be the best team in the league that season, ending the 52-year championship drought for the city of Cleveland. So, they definitely were a dominant force. Hence, the incident may have meant some disrespect, but it surely left the desired effect on the entire league.