LeBron James Outscores Cavs in 4th Quarter After Exec Got 'Too Excited' Seeing Him Miss

Perhaps more than any other team in the NBA, the Cleveland Cavaliers should know that fueling LeBron James' competitive fire is an exercise fraught with risk at the best of times. It would appear, however, that not everybody connected with the organization received that memo.

On Monday night, James returned to Cleveland for the first time in over two years and was left nonplussed to see an unnamed Cavs executive celebrating him missing a three-pointer at the end of the third quarter, which left the home side 89-87 ahead against the Los Angeles Lakers.

As can be seen in the clip below, the four-time NBA champion looked towards a member of the Cavs' front-office group, which was sat across the Cavs' bench, and acknowledged the jibe with a knowing nod.

James exacted his revenge in the fourth quarter, single-handedly outscoring the Cavs as he dropped 21 of his 46 points in an outburst reminiscing of Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant, the perfect tribute to mark the first anniversary of the latter's tragic death in a helicopter crash just outside Los Angeles.

James drained nine of the 10 shots he attempted in the final period, leading the Lakers to a 115-108 win that improved the defending NBA champions to 14-4 for the season and kept their road record unblemished at 10-0.

LeBron said a member of the Cavs front office celebrated his miss at the end of the third. He scored 21 in the fourth.

"He was a little bit too excited about seeing me miss." pic.twitter.com/7gz8poJmRq

— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 26, 2021

"I felt he was a little too excited about seeing me miss," James told reporters after the game when asked about his exchange with the Cavs executive.

"I knew I had another quarter and the fourth quarter is my favorite. It's a good thing for him I only come here once."

James finished with 46 points—his second-highest total with the franchise—six assists and eight rebounds, shooting 19-of-26 from the field and 7-of-11 from beyond the arc. He became the oldest Laker to score at least 40 points in a game since Bryant dropped 60 points in his final career game against the Utah Jazz in 2016.

At 37 years and 234 days, Bryant's exploits made him the oldest player to score 60 points, which is also the highest tally a player has ever posted on his final game before retirement.

Speaking over the weekend, James paid tribute to Bryant, explaining the latter remained a near-constant presence within the Lakers.

"Us being able to remember him and wear the [Black Mamba] jerseys during the postseason and have the postseason success we had, as you guys saw with those uniforms. We got a lot of guys that wear his shoes still to this day," he said.

"I'm able to wear the 2-4 on my finger every night, and then when we play at Staples Center you see that 8 and 24 [the numbers Bryant wore in his career] in the rafters and be able to just live his legacy on. There's a lot of things that die in the world, but legends never die, and he's exactly that. So, it's all about representing him."

LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James #23 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots over Dylan Windler #9 of the Cleveland Cavaliers during the first quarter at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on January 25 in Cleveland, Ohio. Jason Miller/Getty