The Dallas Mavericks were desperate for some sort of spark after falling behind Oklahoma City early in the first quarter of Game 3 on Thursday night (apparently being down 0-2 wasn't enough motivation). Fortunately, after a blown call by the officials, Dallas coach Rick Carlisle was there to provide just the needed pyrotechnics.
With the Thunder staked to an 18-11 lead, OKC star James Harden drove into the lane and took a short jumper that went off the back of the rim and high into the air. Harden's teammate, Kendrick Perkins, got in great position and tipped in the miss, but Jason Kidd and Dirk Nowitzki immediately turned to the referee for a basket interference call to no avail.
That's when Carlisle went ballistic on the bench, even needing to be held back from one of the officials. He earned himself a technical foul for his outburst.
But the replay showed that he had every right to be angry, since the ball was clearly above the cylinder and should have been ruled offensive basket interference.
"No question, that's above the rim the official missed it" TNT announcer Steve Kerr said. "He's mad about the call but he's also trying to get his team into this game."
The Mavericks did rally back afterward, but perhaps the outburst came a little too early as the Thunder pulled away in the second half to win 95-79.
"There's been frustration with officials, but we're not going to make it about officials," Carlisle said after the game.
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