Paul George reacts to referees’ officiating on Thunder Big Three
It’s been an up-and-down season for the Oklahoma City Thunder, who are still not looking like serious contenders despite a jump in the playoff seedings. There’s also a new problem that seems to be bugging the team: free throws.
“It’s tough. We’re so aggressive; we play at the rim constantly… We’re just officiated differently, all three of us, and it’s tough. At least one of us [should] get the benefit of the doubt. But when we’re on that floor, no one is getting the better side of that whistle. But we’re going to keep attacking, we’re going to keep being aggressive. That’s our job, to put pressure on them. At some point it’s gotta work out for us.”
Though not known to be vocal in such situations, Thunder head coach Billy Donovan held the same sentiments:
“Those guys are aggressive players, and listen, there are calls that are missed, there just are. He’s gotten fouled, and he’s not getting to the line. I think the same thing can be said for Russell [Westbrook]. And I’m not trying to get into, like, every single play call, but as much as those two guys are in the lane, they need to be at the free throw line more than they’re at the free throw line, in my opinion”
The Thunder are seventh in the league in free throw attempts this season, and they have had more free throws than their opponents in nine of their last 10 games. However, the team’s three stars — George, Westbrook, and Carmelo Anthony — have only combined for 20 trips to the charity in their last two games, which are a bit low considering their aggressive scoring style.