LeBron James left in the fourth quarter of Game 1 due to cramps. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Don't expect LeBron James to sign an endorsement deal with Gatorade anytime soon.
The sports drink company took a few cheap shots at James -- who is sponsored by Powerade -- on social media after the Heat star exited Game 1 of the NBA Finals early due to severe cramps.
James left the game with under four minutes remaining after scoring a layup and seizing up on the landing. That led Gatorade to take a few swipes at the four-time MVP and face of their top rival.
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But the snark-ery from Gatorade didn't end there:
LeBron watched hopelessly as the Heat fell 110-95 to the Spurs in Game 1 of the Finals on Thursday after leaving with cramps in his left leg.
James went to the bench with Miami trailing by two points at the 3:59 mark. With the two-time reigning Finals MVP sidelined, the Spurs closed on a 16-3 run to pull away for a 110-95 victory.
“I was going to try to give it a go and (Heat coach Erik Spoelstra) said no,” James told a pool reporter after the game. “It sucks at this point in time in the season. … It was frustrating sitting out.”
LeBron’s early departure came on a night when the AT&T Center’s air conditioning malfunctioned, leaving the building a sweltering mess throughout the game. James asked out of the game five minutes into the third quarter and again with 7:31 remaining in the fourth quarter. The second of those breathers lasted three minutes, during which San Antonio responded with a 10-4 run to turn a two-point deficit into a four-point lead.
“My muscles spasmed 10 out of 10,” James explained of the second episode. “The best thing for me to do was not move.”
SI.com's Ben Golliver contributed to this report.
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