It took them until the first overtime period and his 49th minute on the court, but the Brooklyn Nets did something very rare to LeBron James last night: they drew his sixth foul.
With James barreling towards the basket, Nets point guard and game hero Shaun Livingston slid in front of James, getting to the spot and drawing the contact. James, who played the majority of the game quite frustrated, looked disgusted with himself.
Andrei Kirilenko drew three of James’s six fouls, and also drew James’s ire after the game. “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 he kind of put his hands on me while I drove which put him off-balance, which led him to getting the call.
“But Kirilenko definitely flopped on me a couple times, and got the call.”
It was the first time James had fouled out during a regular season game since April 2nd, 2008, in a victory against the Charlotte Bobcats. James has fouled out twice during the playoffs — on May 28th against the Indiana Pacers in last year’s playoffs, and on June 3rd, 2012 against Pierce’s Boston Celtics.
Pierce recalled that time, albeit a bit fuzzily. “You never see LeBron foul out. I can’t even remember,” he said, rubbing his head in an attempt to jog his memory. “I think the last time I’ve seen him foul out was in a Boston playoff game, and that was like three or four years ago.”
James has now fouled out of a game six times in his career. His teams are 1-5 when he does.