Ray Allen is a mild-mannered guy so it takes a serious hit to get him riled up. But Allen was furious Monday night when J.J. Barea knocked him down to the floor, and the Miami Heat guard told NBA TV that he didn’t like the way Barea came at him.
“I thought it was a bush-league move by Barea,” said Allen, who immediately got up from the tackle to confront the Minnesota Timberwolves guard. “I don’t care who you are in the league you have to defend yourself. You play the game the right way, and that’s why I try to do throughout my career. He got ejected for due purpose.”
”It just came out of nowhere,” Allen said. ”I was dribbling down the floor, it was a play where he kind of chucked me a little bit and knocked the ball away. I got it back and drove and he just leveled me. I thought it was uncalled for. There’s no place for that in this game.”
Officials initially ruled it a Flagrant 1, but changed the call upon reviewing it, eliciting strong protests from Barea and Wolves coach Rick Adelman, who also picked up a technical foul. Adelman was furious after the game, alluding to an incident two weeks ago against Golden State in which Wolves center Greg Stiemsma was hit in the chest by a forearm shiver from Jarrett Jack, but was given a Flagrant-1 and allowed to keep playing.
”I just have one question I want to ask the league,” Adelman said. ”Why is that a Flagrant-2 foul tonight and the other night Jarrett Jack hit Stiemsma in the stomach with a forearm that that was a Flagrant 1? I would just like to know the difference. That changed the whole game.”
The Allen-Barea confrontation did change the momentum of the ballgame. Unfortunately for Minnesota, it was all Miami Heat after all the pushing and shoving.
Barea was jawing at Allen as he left the court and said he expected the league to change the call.
”I’ve been playing in the NBA for seven years,” Barea said. ”I get hit harder than that every night. I don’t get up crying and want to fight.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.