Lyles, who earned gold medals in the 100m, 200m, and 4x100m relay, made a comment about the NBA that hasn't gone over well with a number of the league's players and fans.
“I watch the NBA finals and they have ‘world champion’ on their head. World champion of what? The United States?” Lyles said after winning his third gold.
He continued to quip about winners of the NBA finals calling themselves world champions.
“Don’t get me wrong. I love the US – at times – but that ain’t the world,” Lyles said, noting that track and field has "almost every country out here fighting, thriving, putting on their flag."
While the track star was seemingly joking, NBA players clapped back at Lyles under a social media post of his comments.
“Somebody help this brother,” Kevin Durant wrote. Durant’s Phoenix Suns teammate Devin Booker chimed in with a facepalm emoji.
Aaron Gordon, who won the NBA finals with the Nuggets in June, wrote: “Whatever … I’m smoking buddy in the 200m.”
Even Drake shared his thoughts on Lyles shading the NBA.
“He thought this speech was gonna be so hard in the mirror the night before… now the whole league doesn’t rate u," the rapper wrote on social media.
Last season, the NBA said it boasts 120 international players from 40 different countries. The league's last five MVP awards have gone to international players including Joel Embiid of Cameroon, Nikola Jokic of Serbia, and Giannis Antetokounmpo of Greece, per the Guardian.
Some social media users agreed with Lyles' take, while others hit back at the track star for his comments.
Check out some reactions below.