LeBron James has been fined $15,000 by the NBA for a provocative dance celebration during Wednesday’s win over the Indiana Pacers.
James broke out the celebration after hitting a three-pointer late in the fourth quarter. He scored a season-high 39 points in Indianapolis, including eight of L.A.’s 12 points in the extra session, to help the Lakers erase a 12-point second-half deficit and finish their five-game road trip with a record of 2-3.
The NBA has fined LeBron James $15,000 for his Sam Cassell celebration on a clutch 3-pointer in Lakers’ win over Indiana.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 27, 2021
James had missed the previous Lakers’ game due to serving a one-game suspension for “recklessly hitting” the Pistons’ Isaiah Stewart. He also missed several games due to an abdominal injury.
The fine for James follows the Raptors guard Fred VanVleet being fined $15,000 for doing a similar version of the dance against the 76ers on November 12. The dance has been dubbed the ‘Sam Cassell dance’ throughout the years.
Many players have adopted the dance throughout the years to celebrate a big shot, but it wasn’t until 2010-11 that the NBA began fining players between $15,000 – $25,000. In an interview with The Athletic, Cassell said he wasn’t a fan of the fines being handed out to players for the dance.
“It’s so stupid,” Cassell says. “C’mon. It’s so stupid. It’s just so stupid to take somebody’s money for that. Like, c’mon now.
“It ain’t like you’re giving somebody the finger. That’s a fine. You know what I’m saying? C’mon.”