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Baker Mayfield calls out Celtics player for ridiculous flop

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Baker Mayfield didn’t wait long after the Cleveland Browns drafted him to start getting in the good graces of the city’s sports fans.

During Game 7 of the Cavaliers’ Eastern Conference Finals series against the Celtics, Mayfield took a swipe at Boston’s Marcus Smart, a guy whose penchant for selling contact is less basketball and more professional wrestling.

Mayfield, an alum of the University of Oklahoma, also got a dig in at Smart’s alma mater, Oklahoma State.

The play at issue was a horrendous ruling by the referees in which LeBron James was called for an offensive foul when the invisible man hit Smart with an elbow.

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As all-time flops go, it’s somewhere between “Cutthroat Island” and some of the worst that soccer has to offer.

Then again, it might not even be the worst flop of Smart’s career.

The flop didn’t help the Celtics much, though. James got the “Greatest of All Time” talk buzzing all over social media with 35 points, 15 rebounds and nine assists, as well as seven legitimate turnovers and one that got charged on that offensive foul.

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In the process, he also started the conversation of which supporting cast was worse; this awful 2018 Cavs outfit that won 50 regular-season games despite having zero depth behind LeBron and Kevin Love, or the 2007 Finals team that permanently broke the saying “if he’s your second-best player, you can get to the Finals” by applying that logic to Larry Hughes.

The Cavs await the winner of Monday night’s Game 7 in the Western Conference Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets.

Either of those winners would create an intriguing June narrative, as each has its own drama to offer James and Co.

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For the Warriors, it would be their fourth consecutive Finals trip against the same opponent — something that has never happened in NBA history, even when Bill Russell was stacking the deck by taking the same team there every year or when Magic Johnson and Larry Bird were between them involved in every NBA Finals in the 1980s, including the three they met in directly in 1984, ’85, and ’87.

Hakeem Olajuwon, Ralph Sampson and the rest of the Rockets ruined that would-be four-round fight in 1986.

James Harden is looking to lead the Rockets to a similar narrative-spoiling role this year, but his ascension comes with its own LeBron-related drama.

After all, with all the Harden-as-MVP talk in the regular season, there are echoes of Michael Jordan twice putting a wannabe-king in his place and taking his revenge over the MVP vote in the Finals.

Just ask Charles Barkley (whose Suns lost to the Bulls in 1993) or Karl Malone (on the Jazz in 1997) what a feeling-slighted MJ could do to them.

But then again, Michael Jordan had Scottie Pippen and two different all-time great rosters around him for his pair of threepeats.

LeBron? He’s got a concussed Kevin Love and the Canton Charge. And yet everyone watching still believes the Cavaliers have a chance.

As for Marcus Smart, he gets to go back into the gym and practice his flopping for next year.

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Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Birthplace
Boston, Massachusetts
Education
Bachelor of Science in Accounting from University of Nevada-Reno
Location
Seattle, Washington
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Sports




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