Phil Jackson complaining about officiating during an NBA playoff series is about as predictable as the sun rising in the east and setting in the west.
The inevitable happened after the Lakers lost, 103-94, in Game 2 of the 2010 NBA Finals and the series now tied 1-1.
During his regular postgame news conference, Jackson was asked what he thought of the officiating in Game 2 and he wasted little time in planting the seed for the rest of the series. Jackson began with, “It’s gonna be that way from game to game, and I think a lot of it is about who comes out aggressively and does the right thing out there at the very start of the ballgame.”
That was certainly a diplomatic commentary from Jackson, but he sharpened his stance later on.
Jackson had three major issues: 1) how Ray Allen frees himself for his 3-pointers, 2) why Doc Rivers was allowed on the court to call timeout, and 3) the questionable foul calls on Kobe Bryant.
When the Lakers coach was asked what he thought of some of the foul calls on his star player, who picked up his fifth foul early in the fourth quarter, he said: “I wasn’t happy with the foul calls. Those were unusual calls. It really changed the complexity of this ballgame.”
I guess Jackson wasn’t satisfied with the 41 foul shots his team attempted in Game 2 compared to Boston’s 26.
One thing that definitely didn’t sit well with Jackson was the way Allen torched the Lakers with eight 3-point shots in Game 2, an NBA Finals record. But it wasn’t the end result that burned Jackson, it was the initial process that irked him. Jackson believes it will be difficult to stay with the Celtics’ shooting guard when he’s allowed to move freely around the screens.
“When they take away any bumps when Fish is trying to make him divert his path and they don’t allow him to do that and they call fouls on Fish, that really gives him an opportunity to take what ever route he wants to take off on the pickers. That makes it very difficult,” Jackson explained.
“We just have to adjust to the ballgames on what the referees would call,” Jackson continued. “Are they going to allow us to take direct line cuts away from him so he has to divert his route or let him run through Fish and get a foul called on Fisher? Then it makes a totally different type of ballgame. Then Fish has to give him the route he wants to run in and he’s gotta play from behind all the time. That’s the adjustment we’ll make in this series. But he had a great game.”
Then, Jackson turned his attention to Rivers’ timely timeout late in the fourth quarter that allowed the Celtics to avoid an eight-second backcourt violation. “I don’t know if you can do that or not. I don’t think that’s legal,” the Lakers coach pointed out. “Coaches have to stay on the sideline, they’re not supposed to stay on the floor. It looked like he was shot out of a starter’s block.”
It looks like the Zen Master has fired the first meaningful shot at the referees in the 2010 Finals.
Wow really? You fail to realize that the refs handed the game to the celts because the lakers shot more freethrows? Nice logic. The lakers and celts had the same number of fouls; and the only reason the Lakers shot more free throws was because Gasol and Bynum were getting hacked in the paint while the Celts settled for jumpers. Please stop writing articles with references to a stat sheet if you havent acutally watched the game
Simply pointing out the fact that Phil J. does this every time. It’s an annual event for him and he’s good at it. My whole point was you can’t complain about officiating when your team attempts 15 more free throws than the other team. PJ’s argument doesn’t carry too much weight. It’s like going to a street fight with a butterknife.
Wow really? Since the Lakers shot more freethrows than the Celts, Phil shouldnt be complaining? Nice logic. The Lakers and Celts had the same number of fouls, and the only reason the Lakers shot more free throws was because Gasol and Bynum were frequently hacked in the paint while the Celts settled for jumpers. Please stop refering to a stat sheet if you havent actually watched the game.
To the ridiculous narrow minded hypocrites,
Take note: In Game 1:Ray Allen had to sit out most of the 3rd and 4th quarters because of terrible calls.Hiis 4th and 5th fouls were two of the worst Kobe calls I’ve ever seen. It was obvious to all they were terrible calls(esp his 5th foul in which he didn’t even touch Kobe just contested his shot!) It was only fitting that in game 2 he went off with a reminder of exactly how he could change the outcome if he’s actually on the court. It’s ridiculous that Phil complains that Fisher wasn’t allowed to “bump” Ray when he’s trying to run off screens,since we know a Fisher “bump” includes a little lower of the shoulder, or illegally sticking his butt out as Ray tries to go around him,which are almost always a legit fouls).
So in game #2 the tables were reversed and we saw what happened when the Laker’s #1 offensive weapon had to sit out with fouls (and in game 2 Kobe still played over 8 min more than Ray did in game 1). Yes, Kobe he was called for a couple questionable calls(finally just like everybody else, and lust like Ray in gm 1).
Phil Jackson’s hypocracy should be laughable to everyone,yet instead his comments are considered more brilliant Zen seeds he’s planting.Here’s another of thousands of examples. Phil’s complaint about Durant going to the FT line too much. I did the math. Kobe averages more FT’s per game than Durant( Durant took 21 more free throws than Kobe this season but he played in every game,unlike Kobe who missed a few). If one were to look back over the years they will find that Phil Jackson has been the recipient of more favorable calls in NBA history.Let’s forget about the alleged superstar treatment (the “Jordan and Kobe rules” etc) and say those are unfair criticisms. How about his finals series vs Sacramento? It was revealed under oath from an NBA official,that the officials had a motive in that series to advance the Lakers and many calls were influenced by those.Many friends of the officials and others on the inside confirmed this. Go back and watch,and you’ll see it’s quite evident.
So back to game 1: Yes the Lakers outplayed the Celtics in game 1, and it was considered a blowout. However, maybe the following factors below were not considered when game 1 was labeled a blowout, while heading into game 2:
-The run that put the game got out of reach started when Ray Allen went to the bench for a very long stretch(as a result of the 4th “foul” call I mentioned) and then the Cs offense struggled to buy a bucket during that period.
-Late in the 4th, the lead was cut to 9. If Kobe didn’t obnoxiously fire a wide open three at the end of game buzzer when nobody was covering him because the game was decided, the Celtics would have lost by a final of 10pts.
-Ray Allen has made a trademark of going off with a few quick three’s and erasing a 10 pt defecit and getting his team back in the game.Proof is game 2 and throughout his career. Now consider that the Celts shot 1-10 from 3pt and that probably would have been a different amount if Ray played remotely close to his normal amount (all of their Celtics missed three’s were wide open too,not from good defense).
Now, I’m not saying the Celtics would have won had Ray Allen’s minutes not been so limited due to horrible calls, but maybe the game sparked a little over-confidence and it really wasn’t quite a blowout. On the contrary,here’s a blowout: Losing by 39pts in an eliminations finals game(a record for NBA worst).Another NBA finals record for”worst” ?Giving up a 24pt lead late in the 3rd quarter at home to lose.Sound familiar?
I suspect Phil Jackson’s ridiculously hypocritical officiating comments will continue. But it’s getting old. Whatever happened to giving the opposition credit before calling out the officials. For a coach’s first comments after a game complaining about the refs is just poor sportsmanship. You’d think he’s be more confident than needing has to resort to those tactics for an edge. And of course he has no problem showing the people in today’s economy that a $35,000 fine for criticizing officials is nothing to him. Seriously, his antics are getting ridiculous and I hope the refs,players,and fans feel the same.