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Doc Rivers blasts referees after loss to Rockets

Doc Rivers was not a happy camper after a narrow 101-96 loss to the Houston Rockets on Thursday night.

The L.A. Clippers bench boss was irate with the officiating, as his team lost the free-throw battle inexplicably, despite being the more aggressive team going into the paint.

“They shot 41 threes; we shot 18. We doubled them in the amount of points in the paint and it was 24-8 in free throws. That’s a joke. That is a complete joke,” said Rivers, according to Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. “Our guys drove and got hit all game. Lou (Williams) got killed and no call. Austin (Rivers) gets hit and no call.”

The numbers back Rivers the whole way, as the Clippers held them to 38.9 percent shooting from the floor and 29.3 percent from deep, making them rather ineffective, despite making 12 long-distance shots in the game.

James Harden (8-of-9 free throws) alone outshot the Clippers (4-of-8 free throws) for the entire game, despite shooting a poor 7-of-16 from the field and 2-of-8 from beyond the arc.

The Clippers hauled in 11 offensive boards and 45 for the entire game, yet Montrezl Harrell was the only big man fouled, going 0-for-2 from the line.

This loss put L.A. out of the playoff picture for now, allowing the San Antonio Spurs to take the eighth and last spot in the Western Conference playoffs, making this game that much more of a downer for a team trying to crack a spot in the postseason.

They will try to right the ship tonight, taking on the Oklahoma City Thunder on the road.