Let’s just say the officiating in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals wasn’t very lenient. And that’s putting it mildly. The Boston Celtics received five technical fouls Monday in their loss to the Miami Heat. At one point Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, and Doc Rivers all got T’ed up in a seven minute span in the 2nd quarter. Doc Rivers was not happy with the officiating, but he won’t ever dare use that as an excuse for his team’s poor play. The Celtics won’t be catching a break anytime soon.
The New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers both dealt with very suspect officiating when it came to playing physical basketball against the Miami Heat during the NBA playoffs and if they didn’t like what was being called they sure paid the price for it with technical fouls being called consistently. Let’s make one thing clear: The Miami Heat are the far superior team in the Eastern Conference and no one can stop them at this point, but the following video can’t deny that some of these technical foul calls are ridiculous. Doc Rivers joined 98.5 The Sports Hub in Boston with Felger & Mazz to discuss not being angry with the officiating in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, not saying a word to the officials before being called for a technical by Ed Malloy for saying “Come on, Eddie,” Ed Malloy having no patience with him, the NBA not having an officiating issue, Ray Allen’s ankle playing a major role in his struggles and controlling the amount of minutes that Ray Allen plays.
Are you as angry about last night’s officiating as everyone else is?
“Listen, the officiating’s not why we lost the game. Obviously I had my issue and I can only say so much, but we have to play better as a team. We know that. We watched film today and there’s a lot of things we have to do better and that’s one of the things [officiating] we can’t focus on.”
Was there anything else that you said to the official other than, “Come on, Eddie” to referee Ed Malloy? Were you riding him before that?
“I guess I am always riding him a little bit, but no it was one of those I was surprised by it. Let me just put it that way.”
So there was nothing that lead up to the technical foul received for just saying, “Come on, Eddie?”
What’s got Ed Malloy’s panties in a bunch?
“[Laughs] I don’t know. I have no idea. Listen it’s an emotional game for everybody. It really is and obviously it shouldn’t be for them, but it is. It’s a big deal for them as well and that’s the only thing I can make of it.”
Do you see Monday night’s officiating as a sign that there’s any type of conspiracy at play? Do you think the NBA has a referring problem?
“I don’t think there is. I really don’t. First of all I think our game and I think you would agree, maybe football, has to be…I think our game has to be the toughest game to officiate because it is so physical and you can call a foul on every play and you could not call a foul on every play if you know what I am saying. I did TV years ago and it’s funny, every city I went into, those fans thought that there was a conspiracy. Obviously, it’s tough, it just is, so I try to stay away from the subject. But I don’t think there is. I just think what we have to find every game is how the game is being called for our team and I think you try to adjust to that.”
Is there more than just the ankle that is giving Ray Allen problems?
“No it’s the ankle. [Host: Even at the free throw line?] Yeah it’s all balance. His is a lot worse than just a sprained ankle. You have a balance issue. I think right now if you watch his jump shot, usually when Ray shoots a jump shot he jumps into a box and lands in the same box. Right now when you watch him is floating left and he’s floating right. The balance is an issue for him and he just has to try to figure it out.
How tough is it to control Ray Allen’s minutes?
“It’s a tough one. It’s as tough a decision you have because you’re still waiting for one [shot] to go in. But if it doesn’t go in, you have to make the choice, is he doing anything else? His spacing on the floor is terrific, he gives you that. But defensively he’s struggling as well, so every game we have to make a choice right now with Ray. Do you have to give Mickael Pietrus some minutes? I will say this: I think 38 minutes is too much for Ray right now. We have to do a better job of managing his minutes and his minutes in a row.”