James had given both of his sneakers to fans in the final minutes of the game. He was then cheering on his teammates at the end of the bench and appeared to walk onto the court without his shoes on. The Jazz announcers ridiculed the superstar and called him disrespectful.
“Look at LeBron. He’s on the court ... with no shoes,” the tandem said. “What is going on here? That’s some disrespect right there.”
It didn’t appear the announcers knew that James had given his shoes away to a fan.
James also may have gotten away with a penalty for being on the court during the game, which would have been the second time the referees refused to give a call against the superstar.
Earlier in the matchup, James was dribbling the ball up the court and appeared to pick up his dribble, walk two steps and dribble again. Jazz defender Bojan Bogdanovic quickly complained about the missed call.
James said after the game he got distracted by a collision between his teammate Kentavios Caldwell-Pope and Jazz star Donovan Mitchell, according to ESPN.
“I think at the same time, I was watching the underneath play, and [Kentavious Caldwell-Pope] and Donovan got into it. KCP started to run, and Donovan bumped into him, he fell on the ground,” he said. “I think I was ready to pass the ball, and my brain just kind of just, I had a malfunction. I really had a malfunction.”
The Lakers won the game 121-96.