SALT LAKE CITY – The Oklahoma City Season Thunder ended frustrating on Friday when Utah Jazz eliminated them with a fan in six games with a controversial no-call on a Paul George 3-pointer and Russell Westbrook with an incident, when he left the court.
"I did not confront the fans, fans confronted me," said Westbrook. "Here in Utah, man, a lot of disrespectful, vulgar things are being said to the players here with these fans, it's really disrespectful, talk about your families, your kids, it's really disrespectful of the game, man."
As Westbrook went to the tunnel after the 96-91 loss of the Thunder, where he scored 46 points on 43 shots, he hit the phone of a fan. It was the second interaction Westbrook had with a fan at the court, and he turned to speak to someone who said something to him when he left the floor at half-time.
"I think it's something that needs to be educated," he continued. "I'm tired of just going out and playing, then the fans say whatever they want to say, I'm not in. If I was in the street, they would not just come to me and say something crazy, because I would not So, to respect and do whatever they want to do, must be stopped, especially here in Utah. "
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After five consecutive offensive rebounds to the last possession of the ball, while they were three points behind, the Thunder had a chance to tie the score to 15 seconds as George Rudy pumped Gobert and apparently made a contact during the shoot
"I think P & # 39; s 3 should have been a foul call in the end, in my opinion, had him in the air," said Westbrook, "but something like that happened. "
Thunder coach Billy Donovan tried to take the high road.
"I'm not going into what I've seen, obviously I'm sure the League will look at it," he said. I feel bad for [Ron Garretson]. It was a hard-fought game, it was a physical game. I do not want to say that it ended our season because Paul could have gone up there and made one of three, two out of three, who knows what would have happened, but I know I'd like to shoot Paul George in the free throw line for free throws.
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"I think that was one of those plays that most people would say, 'Geez, that probably should have been a foul whistle …'
Garretson said about a pool reporter he felt that the no-call was correct.
"Rudy Gobert jumped to the right of Paul George," said Garretson. "Our resolve was that Rudy would not have contacted Paul if he had not jumped sideways into Gobert's legal space, and we realized this was not a call."
Gobert said the call could have gone "both ways." [196592002»EristzurSeitegesprungenIchbindefinitivinderLuftgefangenManchmalmachensiediesenAnrufmanchmalnicht«sagteGobert”IchdenkeinderganzenSeriegabesAnrufedieinbeideRichtungengegangensindIchmeineSpiel5ichund[Derrick Favors] Both were in trouble throughout the game. Nobody talked about it. I think it could have been both, "I do not think there is a piece that defines a series, you know it's a lot of games."
It's a fitting end to the up and down season of Thunder, with a series of games that end controversially. It also puts them in a summer of unknown, with George & # 39; s free agency in the middle.
"It was a fantastic season," said George. "Really a learning experience, playing out Russ and Melo [Carmelo Anthony] Steve-o [Steven Adams] Seeing the potential of having [Andre Roberson] out There was a lot to be happy about The fans, city "Organization, everything was incredible."
George said, "It's too soon" to make a decision.
"I would like to stay thunder, but this summer is here, we will address that in the summer." George said:
The season was not quite according to plan or expectations, for the Thunder with 48 wins 4 of the West and a knockout of the first round. When asked if he was surprised that the thunder went out so early, George said "not necessarily".
"I think talent and all that, but it's our first year playing together," he said. "I understood we were coming in. I thought we had a high ceiling to win them, high expectations to win them, but I think you really have to figure out the incidents when you pick up a team, and that may take some time to decipher how to become a championship team. "
After playing in the series's first five games, George finished with more turns than points in Game 6, with five points on 2-of-16 shooting, while Westbrook tried 43 shots, including 19 3-pointers
"He's unbelievable, amazing," said George of Westbrook. It's not a cliché, but people say he's an incredible basketball player, and he's an amazing person. That's true, as one can describe Russ as a friend, as a brother. He's one of the best teammates I've seen a lot from afar and have been close to him. He is an incredible person. "