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Did you know that LeBron James is actually left-handed?
And although he’s a right-handed basketball player — something he attributes to Michael Jordan and other players he looked up to as a kid — he got so bored during Game 3 of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ second-round series against the Toronto Raptors that now he shoots with his left hand, too:
LeBron hit one lefty floater late in the first half. He casually hit a second lefty floater in the third after a smooth spin move. And he was still bored in the fourth as the Cavs easily pulled away from the Raptors, hitting his third left-handed floater of the game, again after a downright unfair spin, to give Cleveland a 21-point lead.
LeBron has banked in 3-pointers after the play before, and he’s practiced his lefty jumper in practice with Kyrie Irving. He once took a free throw with his left hand because of an ailing right elbow. But there was no injury here. And this wasn’t a practice, though it might have felt like one for the Cavs, who now lead the series 3-0.
LeBron was asked after the game about his left-handed exploits:
“I’m pretty much a left-hand guy,” LeBron said. “I don’t take many of those shots, but I’m capable of making those shots.
“I work on my craft. I work on both hands. My little-league coach, Frank Walker, told me, ‘if you can’t make a left-hand layup, then you’re not gonna be much of anything of a basketball player.’ So he was the first one to teach me how to make a left-hand layup without even dribbling the ball. I just had to take two steps, get my feet right, left foot down, right foot down, and make a left-hand layup. That was from the first practice I’ve ever had playing organized basketball. And from that point on, I’ve worked on it every single day.”
Still, though, three left-handed floaters? In a playoff game?
LeBron straight up disrespected the Raptors in Game 2 with a couple spins of the ball out on the perimeter before splashing a 3-pointer in Serge Ibaka’s eye. Friday’s performance honestly might have been even more disrespectful, though. It was almost as if the Cavs sleepwalked through three quarters, then, still slightly drowsy, pounded Toronto in the fourth.
The final score was 115-94. But LeBron’s left-handed shooting told you about all you need to know about where this series is on a scale from “competitive” to “over.”