by USA Today NBA

 
USP NBA: CLEVELAND CAVALIERS AT DENVER NUGGETS S BKN DEN CLE USA CO

 

For the second time in as many years, LeBron James is going to pay for an in-game mistake made by teammate Dahntay Jones.

Jones, who received two technical fouls (and was subsequently ejected) for trash-talking after a dunk in the fourth quarter of the Cleveland Cavaliers’ Game 1 win over the Toronto Raptors Monday night, will be hit with a $6,000 fine by the league.

But since Jones — who signed a veteran’s minimum deal worth $9,000 on the final day of the regular season — would be docked two-thirds of his salary, James — who is making $31 million this season on salary alone — offered to lend Jones a hand. Again.

“I said I was going to pay the fine before I even knew what it was, so it didn’t matter,” James said. “I told him tonight, I said, ‘Listen, Dahntay. Enough is enough. Stop getting kicked out against Toronto all the time. I’m gonna have to stop paying your damn fines.’ Yeah, he don’t have to worry about it. He’s good.”

The first time? Jones was suspended one game for hitting Raptors big man Bismack Biyombo in the groin in last year’s conference finals. That fine, which was prorated off his $8,800 salary (also so low because signed on the final day of the regular season), was just $80.