Lance vs Lebron
Competitive banter is so humorus at times that I actually recommend it to anyone, in some sort of competitive environment
This is worthwhile just to hear some of the asinine things that people say to try to rattle you.
My best friend used to relentlessly talk about my mother when we used to play pick-up basketball. Now, this is the same guy who would graciously call my mother Mrs and be so polite to her in person. But on the basketball court, he would paint a fictional picture of her that was so repulsive that I wouldn't even recognize her if what he was saying just so happened to be true.
Luckily for me, I was used to his ridiculousness, which I brushed off. I would also back him down in the paint and score over him with my height advantage, so I let my play do my talking.
Applying a similar situation to the Pacers and Heat, you have little brother Lance Stephenson taking shots at his big brother, LeBron James.
We're all aware of how dominant James is. His résumé speaks for himself. His accolades are endless, and he's on a mission to rack up three straight NBA championships.
Stephenson is an up-and-coming stud who, at times, displays leadership characteristics. He likes to engage in smack talk. The Pacer guard even went as far as saying that LeBron displayed weakness when responding to his lip jabber.
Honestly, how idiotic can he be?
Stephenson can't really rattle James at this stage in his career. He's playing at such an incredibly high level -- à la Michael Jordan -- during his last threepeat with the Bulls that anything he says or does won't phase him. He doesn't need 'bulletin board material.' Getting to a third straight NBA Finals is motivation enough. We all know this, and so should Stephenson, considering he's right there, in the line of fire.
I guess it's easier analyzing things from an outsider's perspective, but it's not like Lance isn't aware of what he's doing. His teammates have openly criticized his excessive lip service and Stephenson, frankly, didn't even play well enough in Game 4 to justify smack-talking in general. He didn't even score in the first half and finished the game with a total of nine measley points.
Nine? After all of that media attention a few days prior?
Learn from your mistake, Lance. You're a solid contributor on a very fragile team. Keep yourself in check, focus on the task at hand, and continue to mature as a person and a player.
But try not to wake up a sleeping bull. LeBron typically plays well regardless of what's at stake, but I think with a couple of highlight reel dunks and 32 points, 10 rebounbs, and 5 assists, he had something a little extra to say to Stephenson without saying anything at all.
It's the perfect way to get his point across, especially when the Heat is one win away from a fourth straight NBA Final appearance.