OAKLAND — The NBA got this one right.
Cleveland’s Tristan Thompson has been fined $25,000 by the NBA for “failing to leave the court in a timely manner following his ejection and for shoving the basketball in the face of Golden State Warriors forward/center Draymond Green,” the NBA announced late Friday. There was no suspension, as had been feared by the Cavaliers.
More than that, the Flagrant II foul on Shaun Livingston that led to his ejection was downgraded to a Flagrant I.
That’s the right call if you watch the play, Tony Brothers was far too quick with the hook.
Thompson took offense to Livingston taking a shot in a 10-point, decided game with 2.6 seconds left.
“I contested a shot that shouldn’t have been taken,” Thompson said. “I mean, it’s like the unspoken rule in the NBA: If you’re up by 10 or 11 with about 20 seconds left, you don’t take that shot. I made the contest, and next thing I know I was being kicked out for making a contest that we learn in training camp. I don’t know why I got thrown out.”
It is an unspoken rule, but Warriors coach Steve Kerr feels differently — he doesn’t want his team to take the turnover there, so he tells them to shoot it. He said Saturday that if there is time on the clock and “the game tells us to take a shot, we’ll take a shot.” Kerr doesn’t want dunks and showboating, but he’s not a fan of the NBA’s unwritten rules.
It will be interesting to see how the energy from that final play carries over to Game 2 Sunday.