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Bulls say LeBron flopped after being shoved by Nazr Mohammed

May 11, 2013, 11:00 AM EDT

APTOPIX Heat Bulls Basketball AP

The play ultimately had little effect on the game’s final outcome, but it was the culmination of a series of physical actions from both sides.

Early in the second quarter of the Heat’s Game 3 win over the Bulls, Nazr Mohammed fouled LeBron James hard near half court in an attempt to slow the Heat in transition. James made sure to throw Mohammed to the ground as the two were tangled up, and he was whistled for a technical foul for doing so.

Mohammed got up and gave James a solid two-handed shove, which saw James fall to the ground. That needless show of aggression got Mohammed ejected, but maybe had James not fallen down, a simple flagrant or technical could have been called instead.

Afterward, the Bulls weren’t exactly fond of the referee’s decision to eject Mohammed, and believed that James may have exaggerated the contact he received.

“From my angle, I just saw a guy basically flop, you know, and I’m going to leave it at that,” Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said, via ESPN Chicago.

Nate Robinson was a little more subtle with his accusation.

“You see LeBron in a lot of commercials, a lot of good acting,” Robinson said, via Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.

Mohammed, for his part, largely pretended that his actions didn’t deserve to get him tossed.

“It was a soft foul; it’s not like a fouled him hard,” Mohammed said, via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune. It was a stop-the-break foul. I thought it was a cheap shot throwing me down when all I was doing was trying to stop the break.”

Whether Mohammed has a short memory or he’s flat-out lying here is unimportant — the video clearly shows him swinging down hard on James before wrapping him up.

“I seen him hawking me down for a long time and I seen him come with one of those club fouls, which was unnecessary,” James said. “I basically just tried to protect myself, stand my ground. It definitely surprised me that he pushed me like that.”

The play will certainly be reviewed by the league office, and it’s possible that further discipline could be handed down in the form of a fine or a suspension. Neither is all that likely, however, because whether James flopped or not, the response from the officials at the time was swift and appropriate given the circumstances.

  1. eagles512 - May 11, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    Bulls are panicking because they know they’re done.

  2. russellbandingo - May 11, 2013 at 2:30 PM

    I guess Noah walking over and shoving Birdman while he is already on the ground is a clean play. Noah should have been tossed for that. Birdman did nothing but get a clean block and get tangled up while landing . No need for Noah to shove him.

    • gmsingh - May 11, 2013 at 3:15 PM

      You’re insane. Birdman was lying on top of Nate STARING AT THE OFFICIAL to decide when to get off of him. What kind of idiot moron is going to try and claim that guy was playing cleanly? They hired him to be a dick every time he steps on the court, and he’s good at it.

    • drago2012 - May 12, 2013 at 1:28 PM

      You better clean you glasses, the original foul was a hard foul and within the rules, but the Birdman tried to do a little ground and pound after the initial foul. Look at it again and you will see him sliding sideways ever so slightly while bring the elbow in a bad intention move. That one should have been flagrant two. I am a Bulls fan and i did not like Noah coming in and trying to put a lick and Birdman.Qween James fouls on every play. He has no moves to speak of so he always puts that shoulder down and tries to steam roll the defender. Actually Qween James plays a lot like a slow white guy!!! Too bad that Deng is out, because between Butler and him Qween would have to fight very hard to get double in scoring..

  3. ravensallday2012 - May 11, 2013 at 2:30 PM

    Maybe the bulls should try to play not cry so much…just a thought

    • mytthor - May 12, 2013 at 1:36 PM

      They should stop crying, but if you think the Bulls aren’t playing their hearts out, you haven’t seen a minute of any of their games

  4. katra2logic - May 11, 2013 at 2:39 PM

    Lost some respect for coach Tibideau who should have been screaming at his payer and not bs’ing while making excuses to the press.

    • pudgalvin - May 11, 2013 at 3:09 PM

      Kind of like lebron after the streak ended, huh. Or exactly like it.

      • jimmymarlinsfan - May 11, 2013 at 3:28 PM

        LeBron didn’t make excuses. The bulls play like they are in a football game and James agreed with it. The Bulls come off as whiny, female cows right now

    • fanofevilempire - May 11, 2013 at 7:22 PM

      If this was the Bulls game plan they won’t beat the Heat.

      • gmsingh - May 12, 2013 at 8:35 AM

        I agree–if the Bulls game plan was to have LeBron flop they won’t beat the Heat.

  5. lemfaxx - May 11, 2013 at 3:54 PM

    I have started to think that they dont deserved the 2nd round or even the playoff games… Its pretty bad that my admiration to this underdog bulls turned to disappontment… Its sad

    • gmsingh - May 12, 2013 at 8:36 AM

      Before you get too sad I would suggest studying remedial English first. Hope this helps.

  6. northstarnic - May 11, 2013 at 4:25 PM

    The NBA would not for one second consider disciplining MeBron for his flop-tacular antics.

  7. thetooloftools - May 11, 2013 at 5:02 PM

    James is a flopper. Most spoiler NBA player ever.

  8. nofunleague - May 11, 2013 at 5:03 PM

    It’s basketball who cares? the whole game is phony now. Naismith is rolling over in his grave. The players are all actors, the refs are all blow hard egotists. Move on people. Two clicks and you can fins a hockey game where men are men.

    • mytthor - May 12, 2013 at 1:39 PM

      Did you make a wrong turn at the internet? Why don’t you go over to ProHockeyTalk.

  9. dirk504 - May 11, 2013 at 5:19 PM

    Lebron looked like a WWE pro on that flop.

  10. watermelon1 - May 11, 2013 at 5:45 PM

    Bottom line is… WHO RETALIATED FIRST? Lebron.

    So if Muhammad is being suspended for retaliating, Lebron should be suspended for doing the same thing.

  11. jbeagles23 - May 11, 2013 at 5:47 PM

    The nhl is full of European flippers. It’s soccer with skates. An yes I am Canadian

  12. thenew013 - May 11, 2013 at 6:54 PM

    real men have class and can control their emotions. if u think real men punch eachother in the face over a freakin game then u r sorely mistaken. real men fight only when absolutely neccessary. the nhl is a terrible example of real men. nvm your a real man if you have a hairy…that is the standard for me. live how u want.

  13. miamatt - May 11, 2013 at 6:54 PM

    LeBron may not exactly have given his all to remaining upright, but it’s hilarious if anybody related to the Bulls puts any of the blame on anybody except Mohammed.

    Both sides are playing chippy but Mohammed is the moron who got himself kicked out after a technical had already been assessed in his favor. LBJ had it right postgame: “I’m too cool, my mind is in another place [to get kicked out]. If I get kicked out and Nzar Mohammed gets kicked out, they win. I ain’t even going there.”

  14. kw27p - May 11, 2013 at 7:14 PM

    Can we just give the title to the heat already? Why even have playoffs? This is why the nba is the absolute worst professional sport bc of its sAd predictability. It’s more predictable than the WWE.

  15. bigwii - May 11, 2013 at 9:49 PM

    “The only rivals are the Boston Celtics.” I’m paraphrasing of course but do you realize Celtics fans don’t consider the Heat rivals. Knicks, Lakers, 76ers, and Nets are real rivals.

    The Heat are just like the Magic a couple years ago they’re not rivals they just think they are. The Magic just like the Heat had some battles but that’s it.

    They have no history, it’s not like the cities themselves are rivals. The Heat will be good for a couple years than they will disappear just like the Magic. They’re not rivals to the Celtics more like a tic that can’t be picked off.

    The truth is LeBron flopped that whole team flops. They obviously get away with it it’s not like daddy Stern will punish his golden boy Bron Bron. The NBA has been questionable for years with their officiating.

    LeBron pushed a guy right in front of a ref they didn’t do a thing Nazr does the sane thing he gets ejected. A couple years ago Melo elbowed Baby Davis in his head on an inbound in front of a ref no call.

    The hypocrisy is obvious the refs take card of LeBron and his Heat its always one sided and obvious Heat “fans” just say “oh, they’re haters.” But still cry when Wade or James don’t get every call, hypocrites.

    • mytthor - May 12, 2013 at 1:50 PM

      What are you basing “the Heat will go away in a couple years” on? Do you think LeBron is going to leave? You have to think that while a team in an attractive market with the best player in the game and a good front office will stay a contender at least until LeBron starts to decline.

  16. spankygreen - May 11, 2013 at 11:14 PM

    Hockey Sucks and so do you……

  17. jjones314 - May 12, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    Great job Nazr!! Keep being the worthless idiot that you are!

    Yeses!

  18. scorp16 - May 12, 2013 at 8:34 AM

    Bulls say this, Thibs says that. Funny how everything they are talking about has nothing to do with actually playing a basketball game…

    Face it it is a chipy physical series…no problem with that. no problem with hard fouls either, unless they are targeting heads and knees (which luckily no one is)

    I find it funny though that only the Bulls have a Player ejected because he comes on the court to verbally berate an official after a call. Only the Bulls have a player ejected after receiving two technicals within a span of 30 seconds for verbally insulting and intimidating a referee. Only the Bulls have a player ejected for shoving another player during a dead ball.

    But Thibs says this and whines about that. Thibs and the Bulls have completely lost their composure. That’s why they will lose the series.

    • gmsingh - May 12, 2013 at 8:39 AM

      Can one lame Heat fan please tell why the Heat is the only team that has any flagrant fouls against them>

  19. scorp16 - May 12, 2013 at 9:10 AM

    Hard fouls can result in Flagarants. Flagarants can be done to send a message (see Haslem in MIA vs IND). There are a lot of hard fouls in this series that could be borderline flagarants for either team.

    However, only one team has done this:
    Getting ejected for Running from the bench onto the court like a whiny woman to protest a Call (Noah) or
    Getting Ejected for having a psychological breakdown on the court (Gibson) or
    Getting Ejected entering a game and in within a minute getting tossed for shoving a player (Mohammed)

    Chicago is a complete meltdown.

  20. iowahbr - May 12, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    In law school we learned to argue the facts, if you don’t have them argue the law, if you don’t have either raise the level of your voice. I guess Thibs went to law school as he doesn’t t have the players or the game plan so he’s raising his voice. Maybe next year. Unfortunate as some of would like to see more basketball and less sumo-ball.

  21. Mr. Wright 212 - May 12, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    He did flop. And it should have just been double techs and play on. Naturally, they eject one of the Bulls’ big men for the second straight game.

  22. trimaster1 - May 13, 2013 at 10:00 AM

    Why push Lebron in the first place? Why put yourself in a situation to get ejected?? Watching him ^5 the crowd as he walked back to the locker room was pretty pathetic. if that was to fire up the crowd it worked (temporarily.) If it was to rattle the heat (and possibly prompt Lebron into a fight,) it failed miserably.

    I understand the Bulls trying to intimidate the Heat with physical play, but I don’t think it’s working.

    Now that i think about it, maybe that was what they were trying to do: Get under Lebron’s skin and try get him ejected.

    Flop or not, the Bulls are still down 2-1, and trying to determine if Lebron flopped or not won’t change anything…

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