In Brief

1,082 games and out: LeBron James ejected for first time in his NBA career

How basketball fans reacted after the Cleveland star was sent off the court

LeBron James was ejected last night for the first time in his illustrious 15-year NBA career, after having a go at the referee.

Playing in his 1,082nd game - a 108-97 victory against the Miami Heat - the Cleveland Cavaliers talisman was sent off the court by ref Kane Fitzgerald with 1:59 remaining in the third quarter.

At that time, the Cavs were leading 93-70, with James having scored 21 points.

ESPN reports that after missing a lay-up against Miami, James argued with Fitzgerald, claiming he had been fouled by Heat forward James Johnson. But Fitzgerald called a technical foul against the Cleveland star over his loud protests, and ejected him from the game. 

After the match, the four-time NBA Most Valuable Player repeated his claim that he had been fouled.

“I got fouled all the way up the court, from the time that I stripped him, all the way until I got to the rim,” James told reporters. “I said what I had to say [to Fitzgerald] and then I moved on, but he decided I should get [ejected].

“It is what it is. We got the win, and that’s what’s most important.”

Match official Fitzgerald said he had ejected James because he had used “vulgar” language and was “aggressive” in his protests.

Fitzgerald told ESPN: “It was a culmination of a couple of different acts. Immediately after the no-call, he turned and threw an air punch directly at me, and then he aggressively charged at me, and then he used vulgarity in my ear a few times.”

This is how Twitter reacted to James’ ejection:

Cleveland shocked by the decision.

The referee gets some stick from fans.

It wasn’t all bad for NBA and for TV…

Golden State celebrates like it’s Christmas.

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