During Argentina’s 1-0 win over Switzerland in the Round of 16 of the World Cup yesterday, one of the biggest names in fútbol came through in the clutch. But it was Lionel Messi‘s assist rather than a goal that won it in extra time. LeBron James heard about the play and used Messi’s pass as an opportunity to reiterate his stance on making the “right play,” regardless of outcome.
Here’s Messi squirting past most of the Swiss defense before laying it off to teammate Angel Di Maria for the game-winning strike in the 118th minute:
And here’s ‘Bron’s ensuing tweet on the matter.
Heard Messi made the game winning pass! That's my type of play/er. Win, loss, draw u make the right play to help your team be successful
— LeBron James (@KingJames) July 1, 2014
Perhaps fans forget LeBron got some grief from critics when he passed it to Chris Bosh at the end of Game 5 in the Eastern Conference Finals. Bosh missed what would have been the game-winning three-pointer from the corner.
He did it again near the end of Game 2 in the NBA Finals against the Spurs. Down 93-92 with under a 1:20 remaining, LeBron again drove the lane where the Spurs collapsed on him. He calmly fired a pass to Bosh in the exact same corner where he’d missed against Indy, but this time the shot rattled home and the Heat hung on for what would turn out to be their only win of the series.
The same thing happened here. Messi — like LeBron in basketball — is considered the finest footballer in the world, except he hasn’t been able to lead his home country of Argentina to a World Cup title. He proved in the extra time yesterday he was clutch without being the ultimate goal-scorer. The parallels with ‘Bron are obvious, but for the sake of Argentina’s fans, lets hope Messi doesn’t run into a behemoth like San Antonio if Argentina reaches the Finals.
(GIF via afootballobserver)
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