LeBron James told reporters on Friday that he didn't mean any disrespect when he was spinning the ball in his hands prior to a three-point attempt in the second quarter of Game 2 against the Toronto Raptors.
Rather, James said it was a tactic to see if his defender, Serge Ibaka, would play him more aggressively at the three-point line.
"It's bait," James told ESPN.com's Dave McMenamin. "If [Ibaka] would have reached in, I would have put it on the floor.
"It was a mental thing. Everything I do is mental."
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James also said that while he understands his every move is viewed through a microscope, he doesn't think the play was a big deal.
"What if I missed the shot? What if he stole the ball? We wouldn't be talking about it," he said, per McMenamin.
The Cavaliers proceeded to throttle the Raptors 125-103 to take a 2-0 series lead behind James' game-high 39 points.
The Raptors, as a result, are facing a must-win situation Friday evening that will require an adjustment in the attitude department.
"It shows that we're playing too soft...that stops tonight," Raptors guard Norman Powell said of the controversial play, according to Raptors Republic's Blake Murphy.
Game 3 will tip off at 7 p.m. ET. on ESPN.