LeBron James is considered by many to be the greatest basketball player to have ever played in the NBA. James, who joined the NBA in 2003 with the Cleveland Cavaliers, has developed into one of the League's most important players and is unquestionably one of the most well-liked basketball players on the planet.
The Lakers star man has nonetheless been involved in his fair share of disputes and altercations, most of which have remained out of the public spotlight. According to a Sports Insider social media study, LeBron James is the most hated NBA player. Here are eight players who have publicly criticized LeBron James.
LeBron James and former Washington Wizards guard Deshawn had a run in back in 2008. In a regular-season matchup against the 23-year-old LeBron James was still looking for his first title, Stevenson's wizards prevailed. Stevenson made the following remarks after the match: "He is overrated. And you can say I said that".
This was followed by Stevenson mocking LeBron doing a postseason game, which the Cavaliers won. The pair locked horns again in the 2011 NBA finals with Deshawn Stevenson part of a Dirk Nowitzki Led Dallas Mavericks side that won the championship. Stevenson followed up by publicly wearing a t-shirt mocking LeBron James, who to his credit did not speak out.
When it comes to verbal spats and physical altercations on the basketball floor, Granger and James have a little bit of history. Even though Granger is a laid-back individual, he made it plain that he thought LeBron, the Heat, and the NBA had disrespected his team. Additionally, he made it obvious that he will not tolerate it.
James had made a steal on Granger during one particular altercation, so to halt the fastbreak Granger grabbed James' jersey and pulled to stop James. James fired his elbow extremely close to where Granger's face had been a split-second before as Granger advanced around him as James retreated. Thus, Granger confronted the king to inform him that elbows are unacceptable. It seems like LeBron is causing a lot of these problems and almost forcing players not to like him, regularly. LeBron: "He is doing it for his psyche, it's stupid".
Noah is one of the NBA players who do not like LeBron. "Do not like" may even be an understatement in this case as Noah has openly called LeBron very nasty and disrespectful things. They have gone at it verbally and physically several times. There's a long history of hate between those guys and it doesn't seem like it will end anytime soon.
Jones was fined for hitting James below the belt during a 2016 playoff game between Cleveland Cavaliers and Atlanta Hawks.
Before LeBron James left for the Lakers in 2018, he publicly demanded the Cleveland Cavaliers front office build a team capable of winning the championship two seasons ago. James has said that the Cavaliers were a top-heavy team and needed defensive reinforcements, something Barkley thought was whiny. Barkley said, "Inappropriate, whiny. All of the above. The Cleveland Cavaliers, they have given him everything he wanted. They have the highest payroll in NBA history, he wanted J.R. Smith last summer, and they paid him. They brought in Kyle Korver. He is the best player in the world. Does he want all of the good players? He doesn't want to compete?"
LeBron James replied saying he was a hater, saying, "I'm not going to let him disrespect my Legacy like that. I'm not the one who threw somebody through a window. I never spit on a kid, I never had unpaid debts in Las Vegas. I never said 'I'm not a role model'. I never showed up to All-Star weekend on Sunday because I was in Vegas all weekend partying. All I have done for my entire career is represent the NBA the right way. For fourteen years, I never got in trouble. Respected the game. Print that".
Paul Pierce had his best years playing for the Boston Celtics, back when LeBron James had only arrived in the NBA. Nevertheless, the attention he received led a lot of players to feel "disrespected" which in Pierce's case, manifested itself in an undesirable way. During a preseason game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, Pierce spat at the Cavalier's bench, reportedly getting LeBron in particular.
One of Pierce's former teammates claimed that it was a result of personal "beef" between the two although Pierce himself later claimed that it meant nothing and the pair have since made up.
The two players have a long and unique basketball history ranging from hard fouls to trash talk, to Simple and epic comedy. There has never been love between Stephenson and LeBron who continues to meet in the playoffs with crucial games. Typically, it is hard fouls and/or trash talk but in a recent battle, Stephenson blew in LeBron's ear softly during a game.
Terry and James have had a rivalry dating back to the 2011 NBA finals where Terry was a member of the Dallas Mavericks.