Photo: Getty Images/Ronald Martinez
Serge Ibaka became the first player to talk smack in the NBA Finals, telling Hoopworld’s Alex Kennedy last night, “LeBron is not a good defender.”His full explanation:
“He can play defence for 2-3 minutes but not 48 minutes. LeBron can’t play [Durant] one-on-one.”
LeBron is widely regarded as the best wing defender in the league (he ranks #8 in the league in defensive efficiency).
In Game 3, LeBron played great D on Durant down the stretch — pushing him away from where he wanted to go on the court and holding him to 4 points on 2 of 6 shooting.
During the Eastern Conference Finals, he spent time defender Kevin Garnett, Rajon Rondo, and Paul Pierce all in one game.
Being a great defender is what makes LeBron one of the most special players we’ve ever seen.
But Ibaka — who has been completely shredded by Shane Battier so far — begs to differ.
The series so far as been tame as far as trash talk and chippiness goes, but the pieces are definitely in place for a heated rivalry to bloom.
We’ll see if LeBron and Co. take the bait.
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