While it won’t be official until later tommorow, it’s all but a certainty that Larry Brown will be fined $50,000 by the NBA for his comments regarding officiating following a 91-88 loss to the Orlando Magic.
Brown had been asked about Stephen Jackson’s $50,000 fine that day for “verbal abuse” of officials, and responded with a criticism of how officials are taking advantage of the “Respect the Game” rules. When asked about the situation, which came from a loss in Detroit, Brown had this to say:
“I know I went ‘Wow.’ and the referee went bang, ‘gotcha’, and I got a technical for saying ‘Wow.’ And they said they had a lip reader on Stephen. Somebody read lips, I don’t know. This respect for the game goes both ways. Our trainer got cussed at tonight. Yeah. That’s respect for the game.
So it blows me away. For me to say ‘Wow’ and a guy to go ‘gotcha’ and there’s no recourse and that they were lip reading as he was walking away, 50 feet…I don’t know.”
According to a source within the organization, Bobcats majority owner Michael Jordan has already had multiple conversations with NBA Commissioner David Stern regarding both NBA officials and the new rules. Stern views Jordan favorably, and if any owner would be able to convince the commissioner of issues in the system, it would be Jordan, the only owner who played in the league.
Spurs beat ‘Cats: Once again, the Bobcats have found a way to lose. This time, though, instead of starting slow and finishing strongly but just short, the ‘Cats started out with a stellar performance and collapsed in the second half. Despite strong showings from Tyrus Thomas, Boris Diaw and Derrick Brown, Charlotte came up short, 95-91. As always, the turnover machine that is the Bobcat Offense reared its ugly head, with 13 turnovers, 6 from Stephen Jackson alone. The team shot just 39.8% from the floor and allowed San Antonio to shoot over 46% from three point range, including a 5-7 performance beyond the arc by rookie Gary Neal. Last year’s All Star, Gerald Wallace, went just 2-11 from the field and, along with Stephen Jackson, was benched for the final two minutes as Thomas, Brown, Diaw, Gerald Henderson and DJ Augustin cut a 9 point deficit to two, before Manu Ginobili iced the game on a clutch pick and roll score over Thomas. The loss moves the ‘Cats to 1-6, while the Spurs are now 5-1.
Brown close to playing: Kwame Brown, who to date has missed the entire season with a severe ankle sprain, should be active in the next week or two. Brown, signed for the minimum over the summer, will help fill a defensive gap at the center position, currently manned by the offensively-oriented Nazr Mohammed and the foul-prone DeSagana Diop. Another injured Bobcat, Dominic McGuire, is not quite ready to play but is participating in practice again after injuring himself in the preseason.