Sounds as though LeBron James thinks Andrei Kirilenko should've had a different nickname on the back of his jersey rather than his last name spelled out in Russian. As in "Flopper."
James wasn't pleased that he fouled out in the first overtime in the Nets' 104-95 double-overtime win over the Heat Friday night and essentially called Kirilenko an actor. He said he consistently duped the officials into making phantom calls.
"I thought Kirilenko flopped a few times," James said. "To be honest, I thought he flopped a few times and he got the call. I thought the last one that fouled me out could have been a charge for sure, but [Shaun Livingston] kind of put his hands on me while I drove, which put [Livingston] off balance, which led him to getting the call. But Kirilenko definitely flopped on me a couple times and got the call."
James also was none too thrilled with Mirza Teletovic's hard foul around his neck during a fourth-quarter fast break. James charged at Teletovic, barking a few choice words at him. Teletovic simply smiled. James was called for an offensive foul and Teletovic was hit with a flagrant foul.
"It wasn't a basketball play," James said. Responded Teletovic, "It's just basketball."
He's a fan
Erik Spoelstra cast an evil eye to those who had wanted to write off the Nets. The Heat coach talked up his opponent before the Nets' double-overtime victory, explaining how those who quickly gave up on them were way off base.
"They are playing with more confidence now," he said. "When they were going through their struggles last month, everybody was ready to make strong conclusions about them or anybody in the rest of the Eastern Conference. I just kind of rolled my eyes. It's way too early, it's way too premature.''
Battle-testedSpoelstra apparently didn't care one bit what previous game footage showed regarding Paul Pierce (23 points) and Kevin Garnett (12 points, 10 rebounds).
"It doesn't matter what we see on film," he said. "Really, the respect is there from all the battles we've been through with these guys. We know they are veteran warriors, they're winners. We've been in some classic games and series against them. So they've earned that respect from us."