Cavs’ superstar LeBron James spoke at length about the officiating and the calls he felt were not called against Golden State.
“I think for me the worst thing is when I actually go and talk to the ref and they say, ‘It was nothing,'” James said at shootaround Wednesday (h/t ESPN).
“Like I go over (and say to the official), ‘You didn’t see that?’ ‘No I didn’t think it was anything. It was no call. No foul.’ That’s the worst for me. If he says, ‘I missed that one’ or ‘maybe I wasn’t in the right position,’ but when you see the ref right there on the baseline looking at the whole play and you go up to him and he says there’s no call multiple times in crunch time? That’s the frustrating part. And for me it’s even more frustrating because I know how I’m officiated at times.”
According to the league, Warriors forward Kevin Durant fouled James twice with less than 30 seconds to go in the fourth quarter and Cleveland down 95-92, but the fouls were not called by the officials.
The league issues a “Last Two Minute Report” as a public review of officiating for games that were within three points at any time in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter or the last two minutes of any overtime period during the 2017-18 season, but players, James included, have slammed the procedure.
The report “serve as a mechanism of accountability to our fans and the media who fairly seek clarifications after our games,” according to the league.
James was critical of it last year.
“I’m not a fan of the two-minute report,” James said of the report.
“I think it discredits what the referees are doing for 48 minutes. If that’s the case, you might as well do a 48-minute report. “It’s not fair to the referees that you only talk about the final two minutes of the game and not the first 46. There’s plays that’s missed, there’s plays that called throughout 48 minutes that don’t get talked about.”
James was also unsure if giving more control to the league’s replay center in Secaucus, New Jersey could be a remedy.
“I don’t know,” James said of the idea.
“That’s something we got to all discuss but at the end of the day, there’s nothing you can do about it. Like I said after the game, what are you going to do about it? I mean, it’s nothing you can do about it. You got three referees that’s there that’s been in the heat of the game all game and we’re allowing someone that’s thousands and thousands of miles away to make a call that can be (a) bang-bang (decision) because they have a different camera or whatever the case may be. If the ref can see it, they know the call. They know what the call is. But, whatever.”
Cavs Expected to Waive and Stretch J.R. Smith
According to Cleveland.com’s Chris Fedor, the Cavs plan to stretch his contract over the next three years.
Smith played in only 11 games during the 2018-19 season as the Cavs veered towards a youth movement.
Cavs’ Larry Drew Discusses Brandon Knight’s Play of Late
The Cleveland Cavaliers knew that when they acquired Brandon Knight in a trade deadline deal with the Houston Rockets, that they were acquiring a player that may be a ways away from returning to form.
Knight, who missed the entire 2017-2018 season and appeared in only 14 games this season due to a torn ACL, has been showing signs of a return to form in his short stint with the Cavs, and it has caught the attention of Cavaliers’ head coach Larry Drew.
“I know what he’s gone through over a period with the injury and trying to come back from it,” Drew said of Knight, according to Joe Vardon of The Athletic.
“I know what he’s capable of doing. I know what type of player he is. He’s a fierce competitor. Not only does he do it from an offensive end, but defensively, he’s a tough kid. That addition in our lineup gives us a little versatility as far as we can move people around. … And I know how bad he wants to get back to the Brandon Knight of old. Certainly if he can get back to that, you guys are going to see a terrific player.”
Blazers Acquire Rodney Hood
Hood heads over to Portland for a pair of 2nd round picks, one in 2021 and another in 2023, Nik Stauskas, and Wade Baldwin, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
“Rodney is an accomplished NBA player that brings versatility, shot making and depth to our perimeter and will fit seamlessly into our culture and style of play,” Blazers president of basketball operations Neil Olshey said in an official team statement.
Hood, 26, has poured in 12.2 points, 2.5 rebounds and two assists per game this season for Cleveland.
Hood had to agree to the trade because he signed a one-year, $3.4 million qualifying offer last summer with Cleveland, which granted him veto rights.
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