Monday’s Christmas Day showdown between the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers provided fans with a chance to see two greats – LeBron James and Kevin Durant – go head to head.
The battle did not disappoint, as Durant scored a team-high 25 points to lead the Warriors to a 99-92 victory in a rematch of the last three NBA Finals.
However, there was one contentious moment late in the game, when LeBron went up for a dunk and Durant blocked his shot. LeBron thought he was fouled and complained to the referees.
However, after the game, Durant wasn’t buying into James’s foul cries, saying it felt clean to him (via SportingNews.com):
“He’s too big,” Durant said. “He’s too big, too fast for that.
“He’s too big. That ain’t no foul. It felt clean.”
The play in question can be seen below, where it appears the call could have gone either way:
However, it went Durant’s way, and it was a key play in the Warriors’ victory over their Eastern Conference rivals.
After the game, LeBron disagreed with Durant’s assessment of the play, arguing in the video below that KD actually fouled him two separate times on the play:
“I lost it on the left wing,” James said. “He got me a little bit, but I lost that one. But obviously the overturned one, he fouled me twice. But, whatever. What are you going to do about it?”
Durant said he loves going head-to-head with LeBron, saying he has a lot to learn from the three-time NBA champion and one of the best players to ever play the game:
“I’m still learning,” Durant added. “I’m still kind of growing and figuring things out.
“I feel like he [James] is who he is at this point. He’s experienced so much more than I have. So he’s looking at it from a different vantage point. But that’s the beauty of basketball man. You get guys who have a different path, a different journey and they meet up on the court and it’s just magical, it’s fun.
“That’s what fans want and that’s what, as competitors, we both want – to go at each other, but also know we’re playing a team game. That’s why he’s great he can take over a game himself and take over from passing and do other things. And that’s how I approach it as well.”
With the way both teams are playing right now, we may see them do battle once again this postseason, as the Warriors and Cavs could meet for the fourth straight year in the NBA Finals.