Throwback Thursday: LeBron James blocks Jason Richardson

With LeBron James coming to town in a few days, we use this week’s Throwback Thursday to take a look at one of the more spectacular blocks that you can witness.

Date: March 12, 2009

Place: U.S. Airways Center

Set-up: The Phoenix Suns trailed the Cleveland Cavaliers 97-95 with just less than nine minutes to go in the fourth quarter. The Cavaliers entered the game with a 50-13 record, while the Suns were a middling 34-31. The game was your typical Suns game during the Steve Nash era, a fast-paced, back-and-forth contest without much defense. That type of run’n’gun action led to one of the most awesome blocks I have witnessed in person.

Lebron’s blockThe sequence starts off with LeBron James’ off-balanced three-point attempt that misses long. After grabbing the rebound, Suns forward Matt Barnes found a streaking Jason Richardson with a pass, leading to what appeared to be an easy two points that would have tied the game. Even though Richardson and James were guarding each other, Richardson was down at his own three-point line when he caught the ball thanks to a little cherry-picking. James, who followed through on his shot, had still not passed the halfcourt line when Richardson caught the Barnes pass. J-Rich got the ball, took one dribble, then went up for a 360 attempt. That gave a hustling James enough time to make up ground and swat Richardson’s shot while keeping it inbounds. The Cavs used the block to open up a Sasha Pavlovic three-point make, while Richardson complained of a foul and eventually got hit with a technical.

Aftermath: The play ended up being a six-point swing that the Suns could never recover from as they fell 119-111. Had Richardson laid it in or simply dunked it, there would’ve been no way James could have caught up to Richardson for the block. James ended up recording his third straight triple-double that night, but that game will forever be remembered for the remarkable effort LeBron put in to block Richardson’s 360 dunk attempt.

Tags: 360 Dunk Jason Richardson Lebron James Phoenix Suns Throwback Thursday

  • EBJM

    Hey as long as we highlighting Richardson’s mistakes, how about this one from the “10 playoffs against the Lakers that put them up 3-2?

  • Doubter

    It was a foul.

  • JK

    One of the most heartbreaking losses I have ever witnessed as a Suns fan. Should’ve been in the Finals that year… :(

  • Luka

    Richardson was a bonehead. Great athlete and tremendous shooter at times but horrendous basketball IQ.

    The same goes for Amare. The guy never learned how to rebound and had to resort to trash talking vs Lamar Odom who was outplaying him.

    I did like the 2010 Suns and I thought maybe if they retooled the line-up they would’ve been a darkhorse championship contender similar to how the Mavs flew under the radar. It’s bittersweet history now. Just like so many Suns playoff runs of the past.

  • BCrayZ

    Actually agree with you Luka, on THIS.

    Hard to believe, but true. Also, J-Rich would hang with gangsters while here & possibly still does.

    He thought he was a smart dude. Would often act (like Manu) trying to scam the refs into calling a foul. Would not want him back. But more than happy to see the return of our “Blur.” Barbosa is getting his trey shot back. This will make him much more dangerous. Shot over 70% last game (even higher efg% & true shooting %), just as he had in the 2 previous games. Last game, he was a plus 10 (+/-) with zero turnovers & even a block & scored 9 clutch points in Q4 but was not allowed to finish the game with Gogi. Jeff has a soft spot for GG14 because he wears his old number & because his girl friend has become friends with Jeff’s wife. Time to rule over his personal life with a smart hoop move. Gogi & Frye played with Barbosa back in the days that our “killer bench unit” could have made us (if kept intact) a perennial power in the West (like the Mavs were.) Make it so Jeff.

    MUST start & ALSO finish with LB. Let’s go SUNS!!!!

  • Kyle

    Wow, if that’s one of the most awesome blocks you have witnessed, you’re not or weren’t a Suns’ fan. LeBron did hussle, and make Richardson look stupid. It was still a foul. The officials missed it because of the angle, and probably Richardson being Richardson.

    This same guy scorched the Trailblazers and Spurs(killing Ginobli who was injured and all but still.)