Sacramento Kings coach Alvin Gentry wasn’t happy with the way that one particular play was officiated down the stretch of his team’s 122-114 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night. With 24 seconds remaining in the contest and the Kings trailing 119-114, Lakers guard Malik Monk missed a free throw. None of the Lakers crashed the offensive glass, opting instead to get back on defense.
Kings guard De’Aaron Fox didn’t secure the rebound right away off the rim in order to save time and allow his teammates to get into position on the other end. However, the game clock inadvertently started before the ball was touched, and when the referees paused the game to address the issue, a jump ball was called since no team was actually in possession of the ball at the time of the stoppage. At this point, Gentry lost it, and understandably so, as the Kings were clearly in position to secure the ball.
You can see the whole situation unfold below:
Unsurprisingly, Gentry expressed his frustration to media members after the game, but he pointed a finger at the NBA‘s rulebook, and not at the referees, who he said were just doing their job.
“[The referees] enforced the rule the way it is,” Gentry said. “If anything needs to be changed, the rule needs to be changed. I think there has to be some common sense about the basketball. We have the basketball right there. They started the clock. We didn’t start the clock. It wasn’t our error. And so we got punished for a dumbass rule. That’s the bottom line. But it had nothing to do with the officials. All they did was exactly what they were supposed to do. They enforced the rule. And so if anything needs to be changed, the rule needs to be changed.”
Given the fact that he criticized the rulebook and not the refs, Gentry might avoid a fine from the league, but that likely won’t quell his frustration with the situation overall.