Yahoo- “I would throw it out [a challenge flag] with both hands like a shot. That’s why I couldn’t shoot,” Rivers said Friday morning during the Clippers’ shootaround for the Sacramento Kings game. “It’s a tough one to me. It's not like officials are trying to make mistakes, but they do at the end of the games.”
With 30.4 seconds left and the Clippers down 85-81, Los Angeles forward Jeff Green was called for an offensive foul on a made basket after driving into defender Danilo Gallinari. The NBA admitted on its “NBA Officiating Last Two Minute Report” on Thursday that the referee made a mistake on the offensive foul call on Green. Green potentially could have had a made basket with a free throw. Rivers described it as a “horrible call, which the league acknowledged.”
“I’ve been pushing for a [challenge] flag for a year now,” Rivers said. “We should have a challenge flag. That is the third time this year [against the Clippers] that [the NBA] has come back and said it was a bad call. It doesn’t do anything for us.”
You gotta love Doc Rivers. He's got the voice of a pack a day smoker, the patience of a hyperactive kid in the candy aisle, the mannerisms of an off-the-boat Italian, and most importantly, the subtlety of pretty much everyone'e drunk Uncle. That's why this shameless plea for challenge flags in basketball is so funny to me. While it is sincere, it is also completely transparent. Do I doubt that Doc Rivers is arrogant enough to want the NBA to change their entire replay system because he has been on the ass end of a couple bad calls that have cost his team some games over the last few years? No, I don't. With that said, I also think he understands that his team has likely been the beneficiary of just as many questionable calls over that same time frame.
That's why this isn't about one Jeff Green charge late in a game that the Clippers deserved to lose anyway. This is about giving Doc Rivers another opportunity to verbally lambast the officials, as well as giving him a justifiable reason to do so. Just read the first line of the quote. Doc has been dreaming of the day that he gets to mock referees by launching objects in their direction for so long that he has already decided on his preferred throwing motion. He is so anxiously awaiting the day that he gets to outwardly question an official's authority that he choose a play that was called a penalty -something that's not reviewable in any other sport- to acknowledge his support of challenge flags in basketball. As a fan you can't help but appreciate the amount of disdain that Doc Rivers has for referees. Put a beer in his hand and dress him down a bit, and he instantly starts to resemble everyone of us by using his emotional state following one of over a hundred possessions to make
outrageous proclamations about the NBA.