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Norman Powell: LeBron James’ jersey tug ‘disrespectful,’ ‘trying to son me’

Norman Powell, LeBron James

Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James (23) drives against Toronto Raptors’ Norman Powell (24) duringd s* the first half in Game 2 of a second-round NBA basketball playoff series, Wednesday, May 3, 2017, in Cleveland. The Cavaliers won 125-103. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)


LeBron James showed little regard for the Raptors in the Cavaliers second-round series – sweeping Toronto, offering to buy Drake margaritas, spinning the ball in his hands before shooting over Serge Ibaka and grabbing a beer from a vendor during a game and feigning to take a sip.

The Cleveland superstar also grabbed Norman Powell’s jersey in Game 3 and prevented him from committing a substitution violation.

Powell, via Dave McMenamin of ESPN:

“I just don’t like that,” Powell told ESPN. “I don’t care if it’s LeBron or if it’s anybody. It could be Kawhi [Leonard], it could be anybody. Just don’t pull my jersey. I feel like that’s a little disrespectful, you know what I’m saying? Like you’re trying to son me, and I don’t go for that.”
“He said he was trying to help me,” Powell said. “I mean, if you’re trying to help me, don’t pull my jersey. You can call my name, you don’t have to pull my jersey like that. I feel like that’s disrespectful. So, I hit his hand away. He said he was trying to help me. He was like, ‘All right, all right. I won’t help next time.’ Whatever. Just don’t pull my jersey.”

Was it explicitly disrespectful to grab Powell’s jersey? Maybe/probably. Was it implicitly disrespectful to prevent him from committing a violation because LeBron knew he’d win anyway? Heck yeah.

But that’s the worst part of getting showed up by LeBron. The Raptors were powerless to stop it.