LeBron James’ epic clap back at Juan Toscano-Anderson after he ‘talked sh*t’ in Warriors-Lakers play-in
Golden State Warriors forward Juan Toscano-Anderson went from relative unknown to fan favorite in just the span of a few short months. In fact, it usually just took a singular play for him to win observers over.
His hustle level was always dialed up to 11, saving loose balls and grabbing rebounds like his life depended on it. In a way it did, as his NBA career was only just beginning without a long-term contract. By the time the Warriors entered the play-in tournament, JTA went from afterthought to critical rotation player, logging minutes during pivotal stretches in games.
Juan played 26 big minutes in their Lakers tilt, finishing with the fourth-most played for the Warriors behind Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins. Due to his size and length, he often had the assignment of being matched up the LeBron James. JTA more than held his own in that contest:
JTA >>>> LeBron
— 95.7 The Game (@957thegame) May 20, 2021
JTA’s block on LeBron sheeesh pic.twitter.com/gTxkDZhSU1
— TheWarriorsTalk (@TheWarriorsTalk) May 20, 2021
Toscano-Anderson recently went on the Real Ones podcast with Raja Bell and Logan Murdock to discuss that exact matchup during the Lakers-Warriors play-in game. Despite holding his own, LeBron James and his Lakers indeed had the last laugh:
“I went into that game like, I belong here, I’m here,” the Warriors forward said. “I was starting to gain my own confidence naturally, but then after we played the [Phoenix] Suns a few days before that, Chris Paul came up to me and was like ‘Man, I respect you, I respect dogs, I respect your story, how you got in this league.’ I got words from [Kevin Durant], a lot of guys from around the league, James Johnson.
So I came into that game like ‘M——–a, I’m here, I belong here and I’m here to play, I’m on the Warriors, I’m one of the guys on the scouting report.’ There are some guys that ain’t even on the scouting report, let alone even talked about on the scouting report. When I was talking s–t to him … I’m mad because I let him score. I should have fouled him instead of letting him score.
But it’s LeBron James, one of the best players in the world. But I’m like ‘I’m here. What’s up? You gotta score on me, you gotta show me.’ He showed me, but that felt fun to be able to talk s–t to LeBron and after he scored on the way back down, he was like ‘Man, that was great defense but I’m the best player in the world.'”
Both the Warriors and Lakers are no longer in the postseason, but expect both teams to come back strong next season. Maybe we see more Juan Toscano-Anderson vs. LeBron James, too.