EMPIRE OF THE SUNS

Suns’ Devin Booker ejected vs. Lakers after questionable double-technical

Mar 2, 2021, 10:14 PM | Updated: Mar 3, 2021, 1:59 am

March: Suns’ Devin Booker ejected vs. Lakers after questionable double-technical (Photo by Harry ...

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

The Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers were playing a highly competitive basketball game on Tuesday evening. It was fun to watch and featured some high-level play through one half.

Unfortunately, the game hit a certain point in the second half where the officials had decided they’d had enough.

Shortly after both the Lakers’ LeBron James and Frank Vogel were given technicals in the third quarter, Suns All-Star guard Devin Booker was ejected after being given two of his own.

Despite Booker’s ejection being an obvious point where the momentum of the game could shift, the Suns kept trudging and wound up beating the Lakers 114-104.

Booker was the best player on the floor in purple before he got thrown out. He finished the night with 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting, three rebounds, six assists and three steals in 24 minutes.

Even with that in mind, Suns head coach Monty Williams couldn’t spend any time dwelling on it.

“I didn’t need one,” he said when asked if he got an explanation. “I didn’t get one because we had to move on. That’s what we have to do in those moments. I saw talking, I saw back and forth and to be honest, I didn’t need an explanation. For us to be the team that we can be, we gotta be able to handle those moments even when they don’t go our way.

“And that’s what I had to do. I had to move on and get Cam Johnson into the game and go to the next play.”

In the moment, it was unclear exactly what happened.

TNT’s broadcast showed Booker receiving a technical foul and then leaving the floor. The word soon followed that Booker had been ejected, to the befuddlement of the commentary team covering the game off-location and everyone watching.

After a commercial break, TNT found the video that showed Booker receiving two back-to-back technicals. The first seemed ordinary enough, with Booker voicing his frustration at the job done by the officials. Booker then threw a bounce pass to one referee and was quickly given his second technical after that.

“I saw him get the first tech, he’s going back and forth with the ref and then I don’t know what happened after that,” Suns forward Mikal Bridges said after the game. “I just looked back and saw him walking out and saying he’s out. It’s tough.”

The game’s crew chief Marc Davis, who called neither technical foul, was interviewed by the game’s pool reporter afterward, ESPN’s Dave McMenamin.

Davis said Booker’s first technical was for “continuous complaining” while the second was for “profane language at a game official.”

Booker appeared to be directing the criticism at official Tyler Ford, the ref that gave him the first technical. It was referee Justin Van Duyne who you can see in the video above walk in front of Booker that wound up calling the second tech.

Suns forward Jae Crowder saw how quickly the situation was developing and tried his best to either separate his star guard from the refs or step in for him.

“I tried to do both! Too late! It was too late,” he said. “I tried to just be a good teammate. I knew he was frustrated, he was a little angry about it and I tried to deescalate the situation as soon as possible but it was too late. I tried to be there for him.”

McMenamin naturally followed up with why it was Van Duyne and not Ford that wound up giving Booker the second technical. Davis repeated himself in saying Booker was tossed for “profane language at a game official.”

It’s obviously quite a ridiculous explanation, with the reasoning for both technicals being a common occurrence during every NBA game.

It was not just Suns fans that were furious with the decision impacting a great game.

The Suns were fortunate it didn’t wind up swinging the game.

Comments

Comment guidelines: No name-calling, personal attacks, profanity, or insults. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate comments by reporting abuse.
comments powered by Disqus

Empire of the Suns

Ryan Dunn #0 of the Phoenix Suns poses for a portrait during the 2024 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot at UNL...

Kellan Olson

Phoenix Suns pick up 1st win of summer league vs. Thunder

The Phoenix Suns pulled out their first win of summer league on Wednesday in a 100-99 final over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

7 days ago

Phoenix Suns owner, Mat Ishbia looks on during the first half of the NBA game against the Oklahoma ...

Kellan Olson

Suns’ Mat Ishbia sees other teams ‘hiding’ from spending in 2nd apron

The Phoenix Suns have continued to zig while other teams zag with the new limitations in place for the NBA's mega-spenders.

8 days ago

(Twitter photo/@Suns)...

Kellan Olson

Oso Ighodaro, David Roddy flash for summer Suns in loss to Pacers

Phoenix Suns second-round pick Oso Ighodaro flashed some of what he is capable of as an NBA-ready player in a loss for the summer Suns.

9 days ago

Devin Booker #15 of the United States drives against Canada in the second half of their exhibition ...

Kellan Olson

Devin Booker, Team USA continue exhibition tour with win over Australia

Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker had another solid performance in the Team USA Showcase exhibition tour ahead of the Olympics.

10 days ago

Royce O'Neale of the Phoenix Suns...

Kevin Zimmerman

ESPN’s Marks: Royce O’Neale’s contract details show bargain for Suns

If we're to shrug at how Mat Ishbia cares to spend his money, Royce O'Neale's four-year, $42 million contract is a bargain.

13 days ago

Amen Thompson #29 of the 2024 USA Basketball Men's Select Team guards Devin Booker #15 of the 2024 ...

Kellan Olson

Devin Booker continues to look the part for Team USA vs. Canada

Devin Booker continued to prove why he will be a valuable asset in the Paris Olympics for Team USA in an exhibition win against Canada.

14 days ago

Suns’ Devin Booker ejected vs. Lakers after questionable double-technical