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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Tom Thibodeau loses it on refs after brutal Jalen Brunson foul

Tom Thibodeau was every Knicks fan at the end of that one. 

The Knicks coach was irate, yelling a few expletives at the officials when it was determined there was no time on the clock left despite New York desperately trying to call timeout and it appearing they were granted it.

Instead, the Knicks had lost 105-103 to the Rockets in Houston on Monday night. 

The chaos had started when Jalen Brunson was called for a questionable foul with 0.3 seconds left on the clock as he went up to block a 3-point shot from Aaron Holiday. 

Holiday knocked down the first two free throws before intentionally missing the third shot to restart the clock and close out the game. 

However, as soon as the Knicks grabbed the ball they called timeout despite a question of whether the clock should have started and if there was time on the clock still.

The officials went to confer, but Thibodeau started to draw up a play while the refs checked on the clock. 

Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau was irate with the official after a bizarre end to his team’s loss to the Rockets on Monday. MSG

The Knicks coach was in the middle of drawing something up when he was informed the game was over. 

Thibodeau erupted in the direction of one of the officials as “Celebration” by Kool & The Gang started to play over the PA system. 

The refs never seemed to acknowledge Thibodeau’s outburst and walked off the court. 

“You look at it,” Thibodeau said of the play after the game. “If you look at the film, you see it. It is what it is.”

Brunson, who had hit a game-tying and-1 before committing the controversial foul on Holiday right after, was equally irate and started to try and go over to referee Jacyn Goble. 

“The thing with the officials — this is how I feel that in general — is that I don’t really care how tight the game is called,” Thibodeau said after the loss. “You can call it tight or you can call it loose, I just would like consistency to be the same. They have a job. They have to control and manage the game. That’s their No. 1 responsibility, so they have to use their judgment and I have respect for that.”

The refs walk by irate Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau after a bizarre end to his team’s loss to the Rockets on Monday. MSG

The loss was the Knicks’ third consecutive and was particularly crushing considering the ending. 

Thibodeau and Brunson weren’t the only two who were irate over how things ended. 

Celebrity Knicks fan Ben Stiller chimed in on social media moments after the game went final. 

“You. Can’t. Call. That. AWFUL OFFICIATING,” Stiller wrote on X

Jalen Brunson is called for a foul in the final seconds of the Knicks’ loss to the Rockets on Feb. 12, 2024. Screengrab

The Knicks have one final game before the NBA All-Star break. 

They’ll face the Magic on Valentine’s Day in Orlando.

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