The Denver Nuggets suffered a loss to the Detroit Pistons on Monday night, following a defeat in Cleveland the previous evening. Despite this, Coach Michael Malone was determined to express his frustrations with the officiating during the game. He was vocal about the team’s low free throw rate and continued to argue with the referees throughout the match. As a result, he was ejected before the first quarter ended.
Nikola Jokic also expressed his frustration, yelling at the referees and getting ejected with a very light second technical. Both ejections were questionable as they were both simply expressing frustration that is not uncommon among players and coaches in the NBA. This has brought attention to the quick-trigger and thin-skinned nature of NBA refereeing this season. Some have suggested that a balance needs to be struck between maintaining control of the game and allowing for passionate play and expression of emotion from the players.
While there is a need to maintain a level of authority in games, some argue that allowing players to show their emotions leads to more passionate and compelling play. It’s seen as a trade-off for better overall play and a better product for audiences. The ejections of important players can be seen as detrimental to the entertainment value of the game.