The NBA fined Utah Jazz stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert a total of $45,000 on Friday for criticizing the officials after Wednesday’s 131-123 overtime loss to the 76ers in Philadelphia.
Mitchell was fined $25,000 for public criticism of the officiating and for his conduct while exiting the court.
After the two-time All-Star guard drew two technical fouls and was ejected with 30.8 seconds left, he “recklessly” knocked over a water cooler while leaving the court, the league said in a news release issued by executive vice president of basketball operations Kiki VanDeWeghe.
“It’s tough to go out there and see how hard we compete and have a game like that taken from us,” Mitchell told reporters after the game. “I never ever want to blame a ref, blame an official. We could have done more. But this is getting out of hand.”
Gobert, a two-time All-Star center, was fined $20,000 for public criticism of the officiating.
“When my guys are getting fouled three times in a row, Mike Conley is going to the rim, they’re grabbing him right in front of the officials, and there’s no call,” Gobert said. “On the other side, there are calls that are invisible that are made. I think it’s disrespectful to the game of basketball and to our team.
“Hopefully they’re going to watch the game when they get home. We all do, I’ll watch it too, but hopefully they feel shame when they watch the game.”
The 76ers attempted 35 free throws on Wednesday compared to 19 for the Jazz, who lost for the third time in four games entering the All-Star break. Utah (27-9) still owns the best record in the NBA.
Both players are scheduled to compete in Sunday’s NBA All-Star Game in Atlanta, Mitchell with Team Durant and Gobert with Team LeBron.
–Field Level Media