If you're a Boston fan, check your emotions at the door and look at the facts.
From a view over top, yes, the second technical and eventual ejection were an over reaction. A Game Six suspension ? Ditto.
However, these are the NBA rules. This is how it's done with every player and every team. Remember last year when Dwight Howard missed a playoff game due to suspension? It works both ways.
Still, if you're a Celtics fan, it's hard to grasp how this happened.
But before you just glance at the tape and engulf yourself in flames of ref hatred, take a look at it from the ref's perspective.
Yes, at first glance, Kendrick Perkins merely reached down to help point guard Rajon Rondo up, and his arm slipped and elbowed Marcin Gortat in the stomach.
But was it really accidental? I'm sure Rondo's arm and Perkins' hand were both sweaty and possibly pretty slippery.
But when you look hard at the tape, it's hard to refute that it definitely appeared like Perkins put a little extra something into his "accidental" elbow.
Even if you don't buy that, an elbow is still an elbow, and while Marcin Gortat escalated it himself by popping the ball out of Perkins' hands, both players continued bickering, which resulted in both players getting technical calls.
That's something many people are choosing to ignore.
The actual "foul" as Perkins guarded Dwight Howard was absolutely bogus. He was simply battling it out with a strong center, and maybe fouled him.
But is that really what Perkins got T'd up for? Highly unlikely.
We don't know how much Perkins was running his mouth during the game, or what exactly was said to the referee. And unless we do, we can't accurately defend Perkins on this call, other than to say, "I didn't see anything worth a technical call."
True, we didn't see anything. But we don't know what may have been heard.
Regardless of which way you look at it, even Orlando fans have to be able to admit (if only to themselves) that Perkins got screwed with the second technical, and will definitely be getting screwed if the ejection stands and keeps him out of Game Six.
If Orlando goes on to win the series, it would have to be warranted with an asterisk, as Perkins is clearly the key to the Celtics inside defense, and his fire and energy would be sorely missed.
We can call "foul" or "fraud" on this as much as we want, but is it really different than the Phoenix Suns/San Antonio Spurs suspension fiasco from a few years ago?
Questionable calls influencing a series are never good for the game.
If the NBA knows what's good for the game and the league, they'll correct this mistake, and give the Celtics back their player, a guy who should have never been ejected in game five in the first place.
In the end, I do feel the first technical was warranted, especially because both players got calls for it. However, the second call wasn't big enough to warrant circumstances of this magnitude.
Boston still may not fend off Orlando at home in Game Six, but there's no doubt that Kendrick Perkins should be on the court to help them try.
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