James, Kanter trade barbs after Cavs' comeback
Enes Kanter NBA file photo
NBA.com staff report
After one of the biggest rallies of his career, LeBron James saved his best comeback for last.
Not only did LeBron lead an epic revival, helping Cleveland overcome a 23-point deficit to stun the Knicks 104-101, but emotions boiled over between him and the Knicks' Enes Kanter. The pair were both assessed technical fouls in the first quarter after Kanter came to the defense of rookie Frank Ntilikina, who was bumping chests with James. The French point guard had been the topic of discussion this week after James said Dallas Mavericks rookie Dennis Smith Jr. "should be a Knick." (New York took Ntilikina one pick earlier, at No. 8.)
After the game, Kanter took a shot at LeBron, saying "You ain't gonna come to my house playing that water bottle flip game again ... I don't care who you are, what you call yourself -- king, queen, princess, whatever -- nobody out there's gonna punk us."
“Whatever you wanna call yourself - king, queen, princess, whatever - we’re gonna fight... and nobody’s gonna punk us”— Andrew Claudio (@Claudio_GSN) November 14, 2017
😳 Wow. Enes Kanter is FED UP (and is quickly becoming a fan favorite) pic.twitter.com/ytVqf0GJ13
When told of Kanter's comments, LeBron responded with the real royalty:
This back and forth followed an enormous comeback from the Cavs, in which they erased a 23-point deficit -- 15 to start the fourth quarter -- by scoring 43 in the final period. It was the second-biggest rally on the road in James' career and possibly, thanks to the war of words and Garden stage, the most memorable.