Refs Admit Foul On Jayson Tatum Was Missed In Celtics….

he NBA instituted a penalty for flopping this season, but there already is controversy over the new ruling.

The Boston Celtics and New York Knicks each were issued a flopping technical in the fourth quarter of Wednesday night’s matchup at Madison Square Garden. Kristaps Porzingis tried to sell a foul call on Donte DiVincenzo, but the referees stopped play and R.J. Barrett hit a free throw to put the Knicks up 87-86 with 7:24 left in the contest.

Nearly a minute later, Jalen Brunson was handed a flopping technical on a Jayson Tatum contested 3-pointer. The Celtics star hit a free throw to cut the deficit to 88-87 with 6:40 left to go. The technical was issued after a New York shooting foul, and Tatum hit one of two free throws to tie the game at 88 apiece.


Philadelphia 76ers



Milwaukee Bucks

But replay review showed Tatum had his foot under Brunson when he landed, which should have been a shooting foul and three free throws for the Knicks guard. New York did build a six-point lead, but Boston came back and held on for a 108-104 win. However, if Tatum was called for a foul on the Brunson 3-pointer, that could have changed the tide of the game.

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“We missed the foot-to-foot contact which should have resulted in a personal foul and reviewed for flagrant,” the official NBA referees X account posted Thursday. “Had no foot-to-foot contact existed, this type of secondary and theatrical movement by Brunson would meet the criteria for a non-unsportsmanlike technical foul for flopping. It is possible to have a foul and a flop on the same play, but the foot-to-foot contact is what causes Brunson’s movement and no flop should have been called.”

It’s unlikely a Flagrant 2 would have been called on Tatum. But if it was called a Flagrant 1, then that would have meant more free throws for the Knicks. And even though New York went 14-of-26 from the free throw line Wednesday night, it could have been an opportunity to build a larger lead.

1   What do you think? Leave a comment.

That didn’t end up being the case. Unfortunately, we might see more referees going to the replay monitor to make sure flopping technicals are issued correctly.

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