Whether or not Lebron James vs. James Harden is a legitimate rivalry yet, the competition between the two NBA stars was jumpstarted with a kick during Sunday night’s game.
Last night the NBA announced that Harden has been suspended for a single game without pay for kicking Lebron in the groin during Sunday’s matchup.
The kick, which came in the third quarter of a game the Rockets won in overtime, earned Harden a flagrant foul 1 during the game.
“It’s a reaction,” Harden said of the play, according to ESPN. “They called a flagrant. Next play we moved on.”
The other James spoke about the kick on different terms.
“Obviously that’s not a basketball play,” Lebron said. “Obviously the league will probably take a look at it. I have no idea why he would do that, but two competitors just trying to go at it and he won this one.”
Watch the play in question below:
The suspension will cause Harden to miss his first game of the season in tonight’s matchup against the Atlanta Hawks. The suspension comes in the midst of a five-game winning streak for the Rockets and directly ahead of their playing against the best-in-the-East Hawks.