Clippers' Paul George: Shooting Only 1 Free Throw vs. Nets Was 'Disrespectful'

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorFebruary 3, 2021

Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving (11) defends against Los Angeles Clippers guard Paul George (13) as Nets forward Joe Harris (12) watches during the second half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)
Kathy Willens/Associated Press

Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul George didn't appear happy with the officiating after his team's 124-120 loss to the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday, lamenting the fact that he shot only one free throw.

"I think it was disrespectful I only had one free-throw attempt today," George said, per Shane Young of Forbes Sports. "I'm going to leave it at that."

Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer replied: "Settling for jumpers and floaters, as Clippers did late in the game usually means you're not gonna get the whistle. Of course first half was much different with some no-calls."

George's lone free throw occurred after Nets guard Landry Shamet fouled him on a successful layup attempt midway through the fourth quarter. The ensuing made free throw finished off a three-point play and gave L.A. a 102-97 lead.

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George entered Tuesday averaging 4.4 free-throw attempts per game this season. He has taken at least two free throws in all of the Clippers' other games, topping out at nine in two different games.

George taking only one free throw in a game isn't unprecedented, but it is rare, especially considering he attempted 24 shots.

The last time he took 24 or more shots in a game without shooting more than one free throw was on Feb. 1, 2018, when the then-Oklahoma City Thunder forward scored 43 points on 19-of-26 shooting but never went to the line once in a 127-124 loss to the Denver Nuggets.

The Nets held the overall free-throw edge Tuesday, taking 26 to the Clippers' 17, although Clips forward Kawhi Leonard went 8-of-9 from the charity stripe. L.A. committed one more foul (18-17) than Brooklyn did.

The Clippers are going to the line far less often this year than they did last year. They led the NBA with 26.3 free-throw attempts in 2019-20, but they entered Tuesday averaging 20.4 free throws, the fourth-fewest in the league.

It was a tough loss for the Clips all around, but they're still second in the Western Conference with a 16-6 record. They'll look to rebound at the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday.