In the aftermath of Sunday night’s 125-102 loss to the Jazz, Aaron Gordon offered perhaps the most forceful defense Nikola Jokic has ever received from a teammate regarding officiating. “It’s crazy that Jok doesn’t get more free throws,” Gordon began. “Jok was 3 for 3 from the free-throw line. That’s unbelievable. … The fact that Jok was 3 for 3 from the free-throw line is just not even right. He’s fouled every play. Obviously, the refs aren’t going to call it every play. They’re all over his arms, they’re all over his body, they’re grabbing him. He’s just not officiated the same way as everybody else. “It’s not right,” Gordon continued. “He’s the reigning MVP of the league, and he’s getting three free throws a game, still doing what he’s doing. But he needs more foul calls because they’re fouling. It’s not like begging, it’s not asking for something that’s not there. We’re just asking for him to be officiated like everybody else is being officiated because that’s not right. He’s being fouled all the time. He needs more foul calls.”
Mike Singer: Asked Nikola about the 29-8 free throw disparity and what he says to the refs: “I’m really trying not to talk to them because I try to and then I get technical, ejected," he said. "So I don’t even try to talk to them anymore.”
Michael Singer: Asked Aaron Gordon whether he could sympathize with the way Nikola Jokic is whistled. This is perhaps the biggest defense I've ever heard from a Jokic teammate. pic.twitter.com/XWk4T0tXjv
Omari Sanfoka II: Cunningham on who he pointed at: "I had my people right behind the bench. I went baseline to dunk the ball, and he's right in-between me and my people. I probably should've read that situation better. I don't get into taunting too much, I'm usually chilling after a play."
Eric Nehm: Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer: "Giannis gets 17 free throws, but I think you could argue he could have 27 or 30 free throws. As a team, we had 35. I think you could argue we could have had 45 or 50."
Fox let the ball hit the floor and alerted officials, expecting them to reset the clock and award possession to Sacramento, but that’s not what happened. After a lengthy discussion, officials called a jump ball because neither team had established possession when the whistle was blown. The Lakers won the jump ball and held on to win the game. Gentry said officials correctly interpreted a “dumbass” rule. “Before you ask me about that play, it’s a horse s--- rule in the NBA,” Gentry said. “The referees did exactly what they were supposed to do. It is the rule. They enforced the rule the way it is, and so if anything needs to be changed, the rule needs to be changed. I think there’s got to be some common sense. We had the basketball right there. They started the clock. We didn’t start the clock. It wasn’t our error and so we got punished for a dumbass rule. That’s the bottom line, but it had nothing to do with the officials. All they did was exactly what they were supposed to do.”
“I didn’t realize that, and I don’t know why it would be a rule anyway,” Gentry said. “I mean, I think you’ve got to use common sense somewhere along the line. There’s a missed free throw. We have the basketball in our possession. We didn’t start the clock, so it was not our error, so we get punished for somebody else’s error. I don’t understand that. I don’t understand how that works. “I just want to make sure everybody understands, the referees, all the they did was enforce the rule as it was written. It wasn’t their decision. It wasn’t anything. The just enforced the rule as it is written, so the rule is the thing that needs to be changed in that situation. There’s no way in hell that ball shouldn’t have been in our possession in a five-point game with 25 seconds to play. That’s an eternity in the NBA.”
Nikola Jokic got fed up after multiple no-calls with six minutes left against the Wizards. He vented to the officiating crew and it backfired. The Nuggets’ reigning MVP got ejected with a double-technical Monday night at Ball Arena. “To be honest, I think I didn’t deserve it, especially an ejection,” Jokic told reporters after a 113-107 victory. “I just said: ‘Call a foul.’ Because I thought it was a foul.”
After the game, Paul was asked about his incident with the official and if he got a reason for the technical foul. “Did I get an explanation on why I got the tech? No, I didn’t get an explanation,” Chris Paul explained. I had an exchange with that official a few games ago about a rule about taking the ball out on one side of the court, you know when you get fouled if you can take it out. He tried to flex. I’ve been doing this 13 years, you know what I mean. They cleared up the rule with him, though, you know what I mean. They let him know what the rule was when he tried to tell me what the rule was. He must be salty about it. It’s all good.”
Tomer Azarly: “I had an exchange with that official a few games ago about a rule about taking the ball out on one side of the court… He tried to flex. I’ve been doing this 13 years. They cleared up the rule with him though… He must be salty about it. It’s all good." Chris Paul on his tech.
Ajayi Browne: “It’s difficult for the officials to officiate a different way — That was very difficult at first … The officials have realized there was an over correction.” ⁃Steve Nash on James Harden not getting foul calls earlier this season.
JD Shaw: Grizzlies guard Dillon Brooks has been fined $25,000 for aggressively confronting a game official and failing to leave the court in a timely manner after his ejection.
After his second technical foul with 27.5 seconds left, Brooks was restrained by Grizzlies assistants after his first ejection of the season. He left to cheers from the FedExForum crowd despite the Grizzlies' five-game winning streak ending. During his postgame press conference, he saved his venom for the referees afterwards when he only answered one question about the officiating before leaving. "As you saw in the game, we've been playing physical basketball for about a week now. And all of a sudden, new officials come in here and they call an inconsistent game. They want to call ticky-tack in the first half and then in the second half they want to call nothing," Brooks said. "And then you got guys getting undercut, getting hit on the floor, no call. There's a lack of protection of the players and that's the main thing, I felt like this crew came out there and just made it about them and that's bull."
"Obviously I can't put it all on them. We got to get the 50/50 balls, you got to be able to rebound the basketball, you got to be able to hit shots in timely ways. But this crew did not protect the players. They just wanted to get the game over with and that's (expletive). That's (expletive) from the very beginning. That's bull." The comments will likely draw a fine from NBA in the coming days for criticizing the officiating. In his five seasons, Brooks has yet to be fined for in-game or postgame comments.
Callie Caplan: Kristaps Porzingis just got a tech, seemingly delayed for clapping at an official while the Grizzlies ran back in transition. He responds with a ferocious dunk on the next possession.
Omari Sanfoka II: Casey on Cunningham’s lack of foul-drawing: “There’s been opportunities for him to get contact at the rim and get fouled. Over his career he will get there, he will draw fouls, just because of his game and how he gets to the rim”
"I would lean toward playing 5-on-5 a bit more," Kidd said when asked about Doncic's frequent discussions with the referees. "You're not going to get any calls. Officials, they tend to not stop the game to change calls. You have to understand there's a point in time in games -- dead balls -- to be able to talk to officials. "While the game is going on, transition defense is one of the things we've talked about that we have to get better. If we're lobbying for calls during live play, it puts us in harm's way ... Just some things have got to be a little bit more important. I think we're going to get better at understanding as a team when to talk to officials. Not just Luka."
Casey Holdahl: According to an analysis of Twitter data by @betonline_ag, Trail Blazers fans complain the least about referees while Lakers fans complain the most pic.twitter.com/XgCtQjpQSS
The Knicks' Julius Randle and coach Tom Thibodeau walked off the Barclays Center floor on Tuesday night talking to each other and "pissed" at the officiating during their 112-110 loss to the Brooklyn Nets.
Randle had 24 points, nine rebounds and eight assists but went to the line only twice the entire game. The Knicks' star forward initially did not want to talk about the officiating until he was asked whether he was surprised he isn't getting the benefit of calls usually reserved for a team's star. "Got to ask them," Randle said of the officiating crew of Scott Foster, Mark Lindsay and Jason Goldenberg. "I don't know what they're watching or what they're seeing. As aggressive as I played, attacking the paint, I can't be penalized for just being stronger than people. And that is an answer that I got today."
The 6-foot-8 and 250-pound Randle said the crew told him that his stature and strength are why he isn't getting more calls. "They said because certain contact doesn't affect me like it affects other players," Randle said. "Because I am stronger, they miss the calls." "It pisses me off even more," Randle said when asked what his reaction is when he hears that. "To be honest with you, because that is not how you officiate the game."
But what really set Thibodeau off was how Randle was officiated. "I want to watch the film but ... something's not right," Thibodeau said. "I don't know [why]. I don't know. I am watching what is going on both ways. [The Nets] are a good team. They played well. But I know Julius is driving that ball pretty darn hard. "And I'm pissed."
"I want to take a look at the film but ... there is a big discrepancy in free throws, I can tell you that," Thibodeau said. "So Julius is driving the ball, and he gets two free throws? "I don't really care about how the game is called. I really don't. You can call it tight. You can call it loose. But it's got to be the same."
Josh Lewenberg: VanVleet on tonight’s foul/free throw disparity: “I promise if you write about it I will not be mad, but unless you have $25,000 to spare I’m gonna stay away from officiating comments other than to say it was a tough night for us on that end of the whistle.”
Kerith Burke: Kerr on Steph's tech: "When he knows he's right, the competitor in him comes out. He'll kinda of lose his mind a little bit. It'll often spurn him."
Sean Cunningham: Portland’s Robert Covington gets a $15k fine for tossing his mask at an official from Wednesday’s game vs. Kings. pic.twitter.com/7DdOGx3CN3
Speaking to reporters after Wednesday's 118-113 loss to the Houston Rockets, Chicago Bulls head coach Billy Donovan said he "didn't quite understand" the reasoning behind a controversial fourth-quarter foul call made by officials, and upheld after review, on Lonzo Ball. "The call made zero sense to me," Donovan said. "Now, I'm not saying it made zero sense to me because I don't agree with what they said. The way they explained it to me, and what I was able to see (on the in-arena cameras), did not make sense. So if I can get a different camera view, I can maybe understand what they're talking about. "But it seemed so far-fetched about what they were telling me, it just didn't make sense to me. And I'm not sitting there saying they were wrong on it, they're obviously looking at it and reviewing it. But I really don't know how you make a call like that based on what I saw."
The call came at the 5:13 mark of the fourth quarter with the Bulls trailing 99-94. Ball had knocked down a 3-pointer, but was whistled for an offensive foul on the play — presumably for initiating contact with the contesting defender, Kevin Porter Jr., after or in the process of releasing the ball. "I was told he (Ball) shot it, he came down and fell down and kind of grabbed the guy (Porter Jr.)," Donovan said, emphasizing that "the way the video was in the arena," he didn't get a clear look at the play.
The play proved a pivotal moment in the game. Had Donovan's challenge been successful, the Bulls would have cut their deficit to 99-97 with just over five minutes to play. Instead, Danuel House buried a 3-pointer on Houston's next possession, making the score 102-94. "It was such a big play in the game, that's why I challenged it," said Donovan, who typically reserves his coach's challenge for high-leverage plays in the final moments of games. "I lost the timeout, but I figured it was three points, potentially four if they would've reviewed it and he (Ball) would have been fouled. If it was a four-point play, it would have cut the lead to one."
Calls/missed calls happen all the time. That’s sports. But he’s felt for a while there’s a deeper issue: A lack of his respect for his team. Asked specifically about matching Brooklyn’s intensity, Bickerstaff quickly shifted the conversation. “We matched intensity, but what we have to do and have happen is match consistency,” Bickerstaff said. “That’s in our performance. That’s the referee’s performance. That’s in all aspects of the game. We saw it tonight, we saw it the other night. We have to find a way -- as a staff, as players -- to earn people’s respect, where it is consistent. That’s what this league is about. This league is about your reputation and you earn your reputation. Those guys have earned their reputation. What’s right is right. I thought there were some calls that were definitely missed tonight that favored (Brooklyn), and that’s wrong. Our guys deserve better than that.
That wasn’t the only call Bickerstaff -- and the Cavs -- felt went against them during a back-and-forth 117-112 loss to star-studded Brooklyn. A source texted cleveland.com with a full list following the game. Two “phantom” calls on Kevin Durant jumpers -- one early and one late. Constant uncalled contact on Darius Garland drives that led to just four free throws. Allen getting mugged in the paint. And, of course, the Rubio offensive foul.
Bill Oram: Russell Westbrook was asked if he got an explanation for his technical foul. “I got a tech? Oh wow. Why did I get a tech. I didn’t know I got a tech. For being Russell Westbrook I guess.” A full minute later he’s still shaking his head about it.
Michael Corvo: Lakers HC Frank Vogel was not pleased with the ref tossing Anthony Davis: “Typically, the ref will wipe the ball, let the guy get his shoe on, have some common sense. Quick inbound, AD said ‘that’s BS’, which happens 15 times (per game) in the NBA. Quick tech, ejection.”
Lillard said, "The way the game is being officiated is unacceptable. I don't want to go too deep into it so they make a big deal out of it, but the explanations that's getting missed, I mean, come on... I felt like coming in, the rule change wouldn't affect me, because I don't do the trick the referees, I don't do the trick plays. It's just unacceptable."
James Harden didn’t want to speak about the refs after the Nets’ loss to the Bulls on Monday night. No matter. His on-court demeanor spoke volumes. After repeatedly driving into contact and not getting calls — he took just three free throws all night — Harden was so vexed after one instance he stared incredulously at the ref, then plopped down on the stanchion looking the other way. When he finally did get a call after getting raked across the arm, he threw his arms aloft and looked to the heavens in mock thanks.
Following the game, he deflected any questions about the calls on Monday or on the new so-called Harden Rules in general. “I don’t want to talk about it,” Harden said. When it was pointed out the Bulls seemed to take him out of his driving game, he replied, “No, I don’t want to talk about it. I never got … it didn’t take me out of my game. I felt like I played well to the fourth quarter. In the fourth quarter, none of us played well. It definitely didn’t take me out of my game.”
Chris Kirschner: I asked Trae Young why he picked up a technical foul with the Hawks up 2 late in the game. "Dre was getting hounded by CP in the post. I asked him, 'You didn't see that? You didn't see that?' He gave me a tech. I guess it's personal with some of these guys."
Kevin Chouinard: Referee Kevin Scott making crybaby eyes to someone in the direction of the Hawks' bench. I'm howling.
Josh Lewenberg: OG: “Yeah, I don’t get any calls. Hopefully that changes because I’m driving and getting hit and the refs aren’t calling it.” pic.twitter.com/EmBGO353eV
Harrison Faigen: Frank Vogel, on the refs taking 2 points away for Bazemore getting free throws he shouldn't have. "That's definitely something the league has got to look at... They can't give us that possession back... You can't correct that at that point, so I'm very frustrated by that."
Vogel’s point is valid — the Lakers lost a possession in the final three minutes of a tight game. Davis said he and LeBron James made the same argument to the officials. “What me, Bron and coach were explaining to the refs was we lost a possession,” Davis said. “We didn’t take the ball out or anything. We shot free throws, [they] take the points away, and now we just lose the possession. Which could have cost the game.”
Ryan Ward: Frank Vogel says he's "very frustrated" by the two points being taken away by the refs. Wants the NBA to look at it.
Ajayi Browne: “In some of these plays, the refs are naturally trying to catch up to this change — We’re all just trying to get through this period.” ⁃Steve Nash on adapting to the league new rules concerning fouls.
Brian Lewis: Steve Nash said Nic Claxton could miss 7-to-10 days. Asked if his conversation w/ the refs impacted James Harden subsequently getting 19 free throws that night, he quipped "I can be very convincing." #Nets #NBA
Eric Walden: Asked about the Jazz talking about the extra physicality they’ve faced from defenders this year, Quin intimated that the new point of emphasis rules have had the unintended consequence of enabling defenders to apply excessive contact in disrupting offensive players.
Mark Murphy: Udoka admits Tatum has a tough habit to break when he complains to refs: "We tell him to move onto the next play. But it’s not easy - it’s a league-wide thing. And for him it's just playing through it, and understanding that he’s gonna get calls if he keeps being aggressive."
Indiana Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle said he was shocked that Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant was not ejected after throwing the ball into the stands during the Nets' win Friday night. After being fouled with 4:40 left in the third quarter, Durant threw the ball overhand toward the hoop, and it sailed over the backboard and into the crowd. "I think I saw Kevin Durant wind up and throw the ball overhand, 10 or 15 rows into the stands and not get ejected," Carlisle said with a laugh after the game. "I think that's what I saw. And so that was shocking."
Asked what the officials' explanation was for not ejecting Durant, Carlisle replied, "I'm not going to share the explanation because I don't want to embarrass the officials. I don't want to embarrass the league. These guys are nice guys. They just made a big error. The league will address it." "You don't want to hear the explanation," continued Carlisle, who is the president of the National Basketball Coaches Association. "And at this point, it doesn't matter, because it's not going to change the outcome.
Jeff Zillgitt: Re: Trae Young's $15K fine "for making contact with a game official" in last night's game vs. Wizards. Hawks had three player techs vs. Wiz; frustrated most of the night, and Young expressed that frustration after game about new rule regarding "non-basketball moves."
Hawks guard Trae Young paused in the middle of his postgame comments, perhaps wondering if he was going too far -- or sensing that he already had. "I don't want to get fined too much, but it's frustrating," the Atlanta star said. There's no telling how the league will receive Young's latest words. This wasn't some unhinged rant, but he certainly had plenty to say about the officiating after the Hawks lost 122-111 to Washington on Thursday night. Young was one of five players who received a technical foul during the game, and another one was given out for delay of game.
"There's a lot of missed calls," he said. "It's basketball. It's just, it feels that they're learning, and they're just -- I don't know. It's frustrating." Young went into more detail moments later. There's a new crackdown this season on non-basketball moves designed to draw contact. Officials aren't supposed to call defensive fouls when that happens, and Young and James Harden are often mentioned as players who could be significantly affected. Young averaged 8.7 free throw attempts a game last season. He's averaging 4.4 this season after taking only three Thursday. "I saw James said it's about him, but it's not targeting just one player or two players," Young said.
Young mentioned Damian Lillard and Devin Booker, a couple of other star scorers off to relatively slow starts. "You can watch basketball. Damian Lillard's never averaged 17 points probably since his rookie year," Young said. "There's a couple guys. I mean, Book's averaging 18. There's a lot of things that, when guys are driving straight and guys are getting knocked off balance -- it's still a foul, whether they're using their lower body or their hands."
Sarah K. Spencer: I asked Nate McMillan about the Hawks looking frustrated tonight, and he basically said they've got to overcome it: "The officiating can't be a distraction. We had 4 or 5 techs tonight. That's ridiculous. It wasn't the officiating that was beating us, it was our play."
Salman Ali: Jalen Green on not attempting a free throw yet: "I understand I'm a rookie and I'm not going to get calls like that. It's a man's league anyways. I just have to be strong and keep playing aggressive."
Will Guillory: KAT already picks up his first tech of the night after another no-call in the post against Jonas. Won't be surprised if things get spicy between those two at some point tonight.
Alex Schiffer: James Harden on the rule change: “It’s still basketball. A foul is a foul…for me you have to keep going.” Concurs with Nash on being the poster boy, but says it can’t be an excuse. Has asked refs to call what they see.
Joe Vardon: Trae Young, sporting a Braves jersey in honor of Game 6, said his tech tonight was sparked by a ref ‘mean mugging me, lookin me in the eye.’ Trae said he said ‘why you makin it personal?’ And, boom. He also said he expects the fine to be rescinded.
Keith Smith: Ime Udoka: "I told the group that was as ugly as it could get. I told them one thing I can't stand is to get punked. We got punked out there. They played harder than us. I told them to use the crowd's boos as motivation."
Matt George: De'Aaron Fox says the Kings don't expect to get calls. Says they wont get calls in practice because that's what they expect in games.
Eddie Sefko: Luka Doncic on dealing with the referees in preseason: “It’s better, but it’s only preseason. Now the real deal starts, so we’ll see then how it looks. It’s hard, but it’s something I have to do. t’s a part of the game I need to control better. And I think it’s getting better.
Jay King: Ime Udoka said the Celtics got a little chippy at practice today and he told them to let him be the one to “bitch at the refs.” “We’re not gonna be a team that cries the whole time. That’s definitely not me.”
Luka Doncic’s disappointment with Slovenia’s loss to France in the second Olympic Games semifinal was more than obvious in the finale with the Dallas Mavericks superstar also expressing his frustration on his way to the locker room. After the end of the game, Doncic was shouting “FIBA is probably happy” while walking through the media mixed zone per '15min'. He was also reported to shout “FIBA happened” while Slovenia big man Ziga Dimec was being asked questions about the game.
Slovenia had several complaints with the officiating and particularly with a play halfway through the fourth period and the score tied at 78 where Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot blocked Jaka Blazic’s layup attempt. Blazic protested that it was a goaltending violation and he received a technical foul.
Sean Highkin: Reporter: "Monty, you said after the game that you didn't want to complain about the free throw disparity and then you did in the next sentence. Why is that?" Monty: "Is that kind of a jab? Someone asked me the question."
Mark Medina: Giannis on Monty Williams pointing out he had more free throws than the entire Suns in Game 3: "I don't follow quotes after the games from coaches. But I think I take a pretty good beating out there. I have a scratch here and a scratch there. They're making my pretty face ugly."
Dave McMenamin: Suns coach Monty Williams: “I’m not going to get into publicly complaining about fouls … but we had 16 free throws tonight. One guy [on the Bucks] had 17”
May 23, 2022 | 6:00 am EDT Update
“He hasn’t had the opportunity to be on the stage before,” Curry said. “With the confidence that we have as a team and the ability to come out here and prove who he is as a player in games that matter and I always say ‘just find ways to impact winning,’ he’s figured that out.
Wiggins doesn’t know where that dunk ranks in his collection, but Stephen Curry said it’s the best he has ever seen from his teammate. Klay Thompson said Wiggins looked like Dominique Wilkins. “That was impressive, I’m not going to lie,” Doncic said of the poster. “I saw the video again, and I was like, ooh. That was pretty incredible. I wish I had those bunnies.”
CJ Holmes: Andrew Wiggins on his poster dunk over Luka Doncic: “They tried to take it away, but maybe they didn’t see it fully through. That’s what challenges are for.” Had a huge smile on his face while responding to the question.
“If you can come in and play good basketball, you can essentially put a team away tonight,” Warriors forward Draymond Green said. “Now this team isn’t going to quit … but you can instill a lot of doubt with coming out and winning this game. And we knew that.”
“That’s a guy who has been criticized for being lackadaisical and the beat goes on, you’ve heard it all, yet on the biggest stage, he’s come through,” Green said. “It’s great to see, absolutely amazing to see him pick up his level of play.”
“I’m still learning,” said Doncic, who also had 11 rebounds, three assists and two blocks. “I think the first two quarters, I played very bad. That’s on me. But I’m still learning. I think after this season is done, whatever we are, I think we’re going to look back and learn a lot of things. “It’s my first time in the conference finals in the NBA. I’m 23, man. I’m still learning a lot.”