The Los Angeles Lakers did not play on Monday, giving LeBron James time to take in other action around the NBA. But, one of Monday night’s games was marred in controversy.
The Indiana Pacers hosted one of the best teams in the NBA on Monday, the Boston Celtics. The home team ultimately came out on top, but a pair of foul reviews quickly became a topic of conversation.
Although James was not on the floor for the contest, he took issue with the way the game was officiated.
Celtics star Jaylen Brown attempted to make a shot in the final second of the game, which would have broken a tie. As Brown went up for the shot, Pacers guard Buddy Hield appeared to hit Brown in the back of the head.
The apparent contact drew a foul call, but the Pacers bench decided to challenge the call. After a review, the referees reversed the call. The Pacers improved to 21-15 on the season after the 133-131 victory, but many argued that the overturned call put the Celtics at a disadvantage.
James took to X, the company formerly known as Twitter, to share his criticism of the officiating.
“See what I’m saying!” the Lakers star wrote. “JB clearly got hit in the back of the head. They reviewed the play, just to reverse it and say he didn’t. MAN WHAT!! Good a– game to have an ending like that. And yall see why I be going [ape s—] out there when it happens.”
Brown also voiced his displeasure with the situation.
“I think he obviously hit me in the head. I think we definitely need to do some investigation, that’s all I’ma say,” Brown said after the game.
Brown went on to explain that he had a discussion with a referee about whether he was hit in the head.
“I asked (referee James Williams) again, ‘Are you sure?’ And he said, ‘Yes.’ And that’s what p—– me off,” Brown said. “Cause I know I got hit in the head. And you see on the replay, it’s pretty obvious I got hit in the head. Then you look me in my eye and tell me that I didn’t. I think that needs to be investigated. Cost my team a game and of course I’m p—- about it.”
Despite the loss, the Celtics remain at the top of the Eastern Conference standings. Boston will try and get back on the winning track when they return home to take on the Minnesota Timberwolves on Jan. 10.