May 25, 2024

NBA fines Rick Carlisle $35K for criticizing officiating in Game 2 of Pacers-Knicks

The NBA fined Indiana Pacers coach Rick Carlisle $35,000 for comments after Game 2 that the officiating had been skewed against his team. The league penalized Carlisle for “public criticism of the officiating and questioning the integrity of the league and its officials,” the NBA said in a statement Friday.

Carlisle went on a two-and-a-half minute screed about the referees after the Game 2 loss that he believed had been officiated unevenly and with bias against the Pacers. Indiana had also been on the wrong end of several calls in the final minute of its Game 1 loss.

“Small-market teams deserve an equal shot,” Carlisle said. “They deserve a fair shot. No matter where they’re playing.”

He also pointed to a play midway through the third quarter, where star point guard Tyrese Haliburton seemed to be pushed in the back in transition by Knicks wing Josh Hart and named referee JB DeRosa by name. There was no call.

“I’m always talking to our guys about not making it about the officials, but we deserve a fair shot,” Carlisle said. “There’s not a consistent balance and that’s disappointing. So give New York credit for the physicality that they’re playing with. But their physicality is rewarded and ours is penalized time after time. I’m just really disappointed. Just really disappointed. The two technicals, you gotta make a stand for your guys.”

The Pulse Newsletter

The Pulse Newsletter

Free, daily sports updates direct to your inbox. Sign up

Free, daily sports updates direct to your inbox. Sign up

BuyBuy The Pulse Newsletter

Pacers players didn’t share his sense of grievance. Point guard T.J. McConnell said he did not want to blame the loss on the referees. Haliburton said he felt there had been inconsistency but it wasn’t the reason the Pacers lost.

“Would I like more consistency? Yeah,” Haliburton said. “But let’s not pretend like that’s the only reason we lost. We just didn’t play good enough. But at the end of the day, it’s 2-0.

“We’re going back to Indy and I like us in any matchup, so I’m not worried. But yeah, we’d like consistency. I don’t think he double-dribbled but if you can overturn that call, why can’t you overturn the kickball? I don’t really understand that. But like I said, they outplayed us, so let’s not pretend like the refs are the reason we lost. We just got to be better.”

Required reading

(Photo: Matthew Stockman / Getty Images)