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#pounditSaturday, March 25, 2023

Video: Penny Hardaway threw water bottle at end of Memphis’ tournament loss

Penny Hardaway throwing a water bottle

Though not quite Bobby Knight and a chair, Penny Hardaway expressed his frustration at the end of Friday’s contest.

The No. 9 seed Memphis Tigers lost in their NCAA Tournament Round of 64 game against No. 8 seed Florida Atlantic. There was a controversial ending where Memphis, leading by one in the closing seconds, threw the ball away but then got it back on the other end. It appeared Memphis had called a timeout, but the officials ruled that it was a tie-up, giving the ball back to FAU on the possession arrow.

FAU then got a game-winning layup out of the ensuing baseline out-of-bounds play, and Memphis failed to get another shot off, losing 66-65.

A closer look at that final sequence revealed that the Memphis head coach Hardaway chucked a water bottle out of anger as the final buzzer sounded.

That was indeed an extremely frustrating way for your season to end but still not the best look for Hardaway. Since taking over for the Tigers in 2018, he has only made it past the Round of 64 once (last season) and has failed to make the NCAA Tournament altogether twice (though Hardaway did lead Memphis to the NIT Tournament title in 2021).

Memphis finishes the season 26-9 overall, albeit with an AAC Tournament championship to their name. As for Hardaway’s long-term future as their coach, the Tigers have already made their decision on that one.


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