Chicago Bulls star Zach LaVine insists that he wasn’t cursing at head coach Jim Boylen during the closing seconds of the team’s loss to OKC on Tuesday night. Footage of the incident in question quickly spread throughout #NBATwitter, as it appeared as though LaVine was yelling at his own bench, “I have fucking 40 points” before pulling up and hitting a clutch three from the logo.
LaVine and Boylen have had their issues so it was reasonable to believe that LaVine’s anger was directed at the head coach. However, the 24-year old guard claimshe was actually just talking shit to Thunder point guard Dennis Schroder.
“You get into the heat of the battle and between players when you guys are talking, you talk smack sometimes, right? And that’s all it was,” LaVine told ESPN.
“We were still down. [Oklahoma City’s Dennis Schroder] was talking a little mess to me and I just let him know, ‘Look, I’ve got 40, I don’t know why you’re talking to me,'” he added. “I don’t know why they said they thought I was talking to Jim, but it was just people being competitive in the game talking.”
Although the trash talk wasn’t directed at his head coach, LaVine admitted that he has to do a better job of watching his actions on the court. Says LaVine, “The cameras have been following me lately, so people are going to make their own assumptions on what’s going on between me and Jim or me and the team, but our relationship is fine. I’m a competitive and fiery guy on the court, so that’s pretty much what happened.”
The Bulls currently rank 11th in the Eastern Conference with a record of 20-39.