Cousins gets first ejection

Here are the two technical fouls that caused DeMarcus Cousins to get his first NBA ejection.

Video of the first technical:

And here is the controversial second technical foul.

Here is an excerpt of what I wrote on TrueHoop this morning on the matter:

In the spirit of the new tech policy, I’m completely on board with the first tech Cousins received in the game. You can’t really make a spectacle of the calls, and even though it didn’t appear he said anything out of line, he still ran from sideline to sideline and kept motioning for a changed call. Referee David Guthrie was on the side of the court Cousins ran to, and likely felt it was over the top with the way he was “protesting” the call.

It’s not the end of the world and it’s not really disrespecting the game all that much. However, it is the kind of thing the new tech policy is trying to curb and at this point in the season, players (even rookies) should know better.

The second technical foul is where the officials lose me. Cousins and Chandler are battling for position on an attempted free throw. They get tangled up like an awkward 8th grade dance before separating. Chandler’s elbow gets a little high into Cousins, but there really was no excessive contact made and no order to restore.

Yet referee Marc Davis comes rushing in from near halfcourt to hit the players with the dreaded and confusing double technical foul.

I know many fans will not agree with the first technical foul but it’s the right call. With the new policy (which I will defend as a good idea), Cousins can’t go making a spectacle of a call he views as incorrect. He has this problem and it’s amazing (considering his rookie status) that he doesn’t get T’d up more for it.

However, the second technical foul is extremely ridiculous and flat-out wrong. Marc Davis is a referee with enough experience in this league to not make such a lazy double technical foul call. You could argue that only Tyson Chandler deserved a tech on that play and I might be willing to listen. But the reality is there shouldn’t have even been a foul or double-foul call, let alone a double technical for two players getting tangled up and not overreacting to it. Chandler’s elbow was completely incidental and all Cousins did was get out of the way.

Reffing is a really hard job, especially in the NBA. Last time I tried to ref a game, it was a freshman-JV scrimmage during a practice. I have never felt so bad about any job I was doing. I can’t imagine how hard it is to deal with the speed of the NBA game while trying to keep a billion dollar industry as honest as possible. But this second technical has no excuse. It was a referee far away from the play with a bad angle overreacting to something he thought he saw but wasn’t actually there.

There is no conspiracy and there isn’t some bias against DeMarcus and the Kings here. It was just a case of bad officiating that cost Cousins a chance to finish a game he was excelling in. I doubt it would have changed the outcome of the game, but DeMarcus still deserved that right to try to help his team win.


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