The Boston Celtics were victims of a controversial call down the stretch in Sunday’s game against the Portland Trail Blazers, with a backcourt violation costing them an important possession late in the game.
Leading by three with about 20 seconds left, the Celtics were called for the violation when Jayson Tatum threw the ball to Gordon Hayward while crossing the timeline. Many felt that Hayward caught the pass in the frontcourt, which should not have been a violation.
Ok. Taking a serious look at this terrible backcourt call.
Tatum: jumps into air and passes ball before he crosses half court.
Crew chief Marc Davis told ESPN pool reporter Andrew Lopez that the call was correct, as the ball broke the plane of the frontcourt while being passed by Tatum and was caught by Hayward with his back foot in the backcourt.
NBA referee Marc Davis comments to a pool reporter after today's game between the Celtics and Trail Blazers: pic.twitter.com/PDkPZ3Kskx
The major point is that it matters where the ball is when Tatum is passing it, not the player. In this instance, though Tatum began the jump pass in the backcourt, the ball was adjudged to have crossed the line, and Hayward caught the pass with his foot behind it.
In the end, it didn’t impact the final outcome, as the Celtics held on to win 128-124.
The vast majority of NBA players have chosen to kneel during the national anthem before games, and one Oklahoma politician is warning the Thunder that they will face financial consequences if their players continue to take part in the demonstrations.
Rep. Sean Roberts (R-Hominy) issued a statement on Friday night threatening to reexamine the Thunder’s tax benefits in the state of Oklahoma if players continue to kneel during the national anthem. He called the protests “anti-patriotic.” Roberts also criticized the Black Lives Matter movement for having “ties to Marxism.”
“By kneeling during the playing of the national anthem, the NBA and its players are showing disrespect to the American flag and all it stands for,” Roberts wrote in the statement, via Hicam Raache of KFOR. This anti-patriotic act makes clear the NBA’s support of the Black Lives Matter group and its goal of defunding our nation’s police, its ties to Marxism and its efforts to destroy nuclear families.
“If the Oklahoma City Thunder leadership and players follow the current trend of the NBA by kneeling during the national anthem prior to Saturday’s game, perhaps we need to reexamine the significant tax benefits the State of Oklahoma granted the Oklahoma City Thunder organization when they came to Oklahoma. Through the Quality Jobs Act, the Thunder is still under contract to receive these tax breaks from our state until 2024.”
Roberts said the funds that go toward helping the Thunder may be better served supporting the police department than organizations that are trying to defund the police. The Thunder did not respond when Raache sought comment from the team.
Lou Williams insists the only reason he stopped off at the Magic City strip club in Atlanta over a week ago was to pick up one of his favorite meals, but the Los Angeles Clippers star seems to have taken part in some standard gentleman’s club activity while waiting for his order to be prepared.
Jenny Jarvie, the Atlanta Bureau Chief for the Los Angeles Times, visited Magic City this week to get a feel for the club’s operations during the coronavirus pandemic. Jarvie spoke with a dancer named Aries who confirmed that she danced for Williams when he stopped off for some “Louwill Lemon Pepper BBQ wings,” which is the dish Magic City named after Williams. Aries said Williams walked around the club and had several dancers perform for him, though she claims he kept a six-foot distance.
“He tipped very well,” Aries said.
Magic City reopened in late June after initially closing due to the pandemic. Jarvie observed a security staffer taking forehead temperatures of patrons before they entered the club, but there has still be physical contact between dancers and customers. A sign near the entrance said masks are required, though it does not sound like that rule is being enforced. Williams was wearing a mask in the photo of him at Magic City that led to the NBA’s investigation.
Williams has faced heavy criticism and been the punchline of a number of jokes over his decision, and the fact that he supposedly paid for some dances while at the strip club isn’t going to help his case. After serving his NBA-mandated 10-day quarantine, Williams will be eligible to return to the Clippers’ lineup on Tuesday night against the Phoenix Suns.
Montrezl Harrell has been away from the Los Angeles Clippers for two weeks, and the big man is having a hard time since the death of his grandmother.
Harrell left the NBA Bubble in Orlando, Fla. for a personal matter, we learned on July 17. Harrell has been posting messages on his Instagram account indicating that he was looking after his grandmother, who died.
On Friday, Harrell wrote a personal message on Instagram about the death of his grandmother. His note expressed his love for her and how difficult it was coping with her death.
Montrezl Harrell shared this on his IG story. He left the team on July 17 for an excused family emergency. pic.twitter.com/XW81mXHdi7
Embiid appeared to be upset with Milton over a sequence before the end of the quarter. First, Milton and Embiid got mixed up defensively. Then, after giving up a bucket, Milton got the ball stolen away from him when trying to bring the ball up the court, leading to another Pacers basket.
Do not mess with Kawhi Leonard when he has his gameface on.
Marcus Morris messed with Leonard late in the Los Angeles Clippers’ 126-103 win over the New Orleans Pelicans in Orlando, Fla. on Saturday. Morris gave Leonard the classic bunny ears, and Kawhi was not amused.
Leonard was the second-leading scorer for the Clippers in the win, putting up 24 points, six rebounds and five assists. Paul George led the team with 28 points, most of which came on his eight three-pointers. Morris had nine points.
The Clippers got out to such a big lead in the game early on that none of their starters played more than 27 minutes, leaving plenty of time for laughs on the bench — or serious faces, if you’re Kawhi.