Bad calls happen all the time in the NBA, but it’s rare that a single whistle results in this much chaos.
During Wednesday night’s game between the Mavericks and the Pelicans, a call in the second quarter set things off. Mavs guard Devin Harris took a hard elbow directly to the face from Jamal Crawford, but was somehow hit with a blocking foul on the play. The contact didn’t look intentional, but it was still definitely Crawford’s fault. Referee Ben Taylor apparently didn’t see it the same way.
Harris was incensed. He earned two technical fouls while jawing at the official, as his teammates held him back. That an automatic ejection from the game. Dallas head coach Rick Carlisle and assistant coach Melvin Hunt would both receive a technical for arguing the play and the ejection.
The league may review the play, but it’s unlikely they will rescind the technicals. The call may have been wrong, but Harris’ reaction is something the NBA doesn’t want to encourage. Although the play happened before halftime, it definitely could have had an impact on the final score, since the Pelicans would hang on to win by three points, 121-118.