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Lance Stephenson Blowing in LeBron James’ Ear is a photoshop meme based on a close-up footage of the Indiana Pacers shooting guard trying to taunt the Miami Heat forward by breathing into his ear during the fifth game of the NBA Eastern Conference finals.
During Game 5 of the NBA Eastern Conference finals between the Indiana Pacers and the Miami Heat on May 28th, 2014, Indiana Pacers’ Lance Stephenson was caught on camera bending down next to his opponent Lebron James and gently blowing air into his left ear, to which the Miami Heat forward reacted by shaking his head in disapproval (shown below).
Immediately after the game, the sports blog Terez Owens tweeted a photoshopped screen capture of Stephenson blowing smoke rings.
Also on May 28th, 2014, ESPN SportsNation shared two photoshopped parodies of Stephens blowing on a birthday cake and a toy windmill via Instagram (shown below). In less than 24 hours, the post received more than 8,800 likes.
That evening, Redditor _DukeSilver posted an animated GIF of the incident to the /r/funny subreddit, where it gained over 5,900 upvotes and 160 comments in the first 24 hours (shown below, left). In the comments section, Redditor MisterOMinous submitted a photoshopped picture of Stephenson blowing into a NES video game cartridge (shown below, right).
On the following day, SBNation’s NBA-specific Twitter account posted a photoshopped parody of Stephenson drinking a sundae ice cream from a straw with the cast of the popular sitcom television series Friends. In the first six hours, the tweet accumulated upwards of 1,000 retweets and 450 favorites. Also on May 29th, The Daily Dot highlighted several notable examples from the photoshop series.
NBA (@SBNationNBA) May 29, 2014
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