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Interesting stat: LeBron James has gone two games without a free throw attempt

Mar 11, 2014, 1:56 PM EDT

Washington Wizards v Miami Heat Getty Images

LeBron James draws fouls.

It’s part of his skill as a basketball player — he’s quick enough to get to the rim, strong enough to finish through contact. LeBron averages 7.3 free throw attempts a game (eighth highest in the league) and has a very healthy free throw rate of .42 (percentage of free throw attempts per field goal attempts).

But LeBron has now gone back-to-back games without getting a free throw attempt, something very rare and pointed out by Royce Young at Eye on Basketball.

The game Sunday was the first time since 2009 LeBron hadn’t attempted a free throw in a game. But now with it happening two straight times, this is the first time it’s happened consecutively since 2003, LeBron’s rookie season.

“Very surprised,” James told reporters about it.

There’s a logical reason for this (as Young notes) — LeBron has ditched the mask covering his broken nose, apparently feeling it bothered his shot. But without the mask he is shying away from contact (he is still getting to the rim, 9 of his 15 shots against Washington Monday were in the restricted area).

Next up for the Heat are the Nets on Wednesday. I’d be shocked if LeBron doesn’t have a free throw attempt in that game.

  1. nflcrimerankingscom - Mar 11, 2014 at 2:20 PM

    I wonder if this is him quitting like he did in the 2010 playoffs.

  2. ironyisadeadscene - Mar 11, 2014 at 2:21 PM

    He’s just not flopping hard enough…..he needs to get back to basics….putting his fingers to his lip, checking for blood for example.

    • cantonbound13 - Mar 11, 2014 at 3:03 PM

      Funny but sadly the truth.

    • mrbhenderson - Mar 11, 2014 at 4:08 PM

      Using that logic, you are saying that he should “flop” more because he wont get any calls without it.

      • psung26 - Mar 11, 2014 at 5:04 PM

        Captain Obvious to the rescue!!

    • pfic15 - Mar 11, 2014 at 6:32 PM

      If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

  3. antistratfordian - Mar 11, 2014 at 2:58 PM

    He should’ve went to the free throw line at the end of the Bulls game.

    • money2long - Mar 11, 2014 at 8:16 PM

      And Paul George wasn’t fouled by James on his three point attempt ?
      Wow.
      U only see what you want to see.
      You’re pathetic

      • antistratfordian - Mar 11, 2014 at 8:52 PM

        Did LeBron smack George on his arm while shooting like LeBron got hit? No. LeBron wasn’t even in front of George. PG had a completely clear look at the basket.

        And what’s with the name calling? Why are you so angry all the time? We’re only talking about basketball, remember. So chill. Relax. Enjoy the scene, brother. Enjoy life!

      • money2long - Mar 12, 2014 at 1:10 AM

        That’s not name calling.
        Why are u so sensitive anyway.
        Are u a man or a woman ?
        And clean play by jimmy Butler. If u think lebron should go to the line for what butler did to him and see no reason for George to go to the line for what lebron did to him , then u are the epitome of double standard and proof of why people say u slurp lebron. In your eyes he can do no wrong

  4. cantonbound13 - Mar 11, 2014 at 3:04 PM

    David Stern would never allow this to continue.

  5. dynasonic - Mar 11, 2014 at 3:26 PM

    Don’t worry… when the Pacers meet the Heat in the ECF, Joey Crawford will make sure Lebron is at the free throw line early and often. Lebron stepping out of bounds with Joey looking right at his f’ing foot? No… let the drive continue. Surely the court moved or shrank or something.

    • brutl - Mar 11, 2014 at 5:21 PM

      You must not have been watching the playoffs last year. Indiana gets to do pretty much whatever they want in the lane without getting fouls called.
      I don’t know of a single player who gets hammered like Lebron does on almost every play. You’d think his FT attempts would show that but you have guys like James Harden who hardly take any contact at all.

      • bjswoosh805 - Mar 11, 2014 at 7:05 PM

        Well you must have not been watching NBA PLAYOFFS at all. Because that’s how it should be in the playoffs, grinded out game and physical. Players like Lebron and Griffin who thrives on playing w/ contact usually initiates it so don’t be surprise if their defender raise the same level of physicality agains them.

  6. campcouch - Mar 11, 2014 at 7:46 PM

    uh-oh Heat fans,this is how it starts. Lack of passion,Conference Finals exit,jersey tossed in the stands…news conference…”I’ll be taking my talents to New York to play for Phil Jackson”

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