MILWAUKEE -- A somewhat lackluster matchup between the Milwaukee Bucks and Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night was sparked to life in the third quarter when Nets head coach Steve Nash was ejected for the first time in his coaching career and had to be restrained by his assistants. Nash's outburst was not enough to inspire his team to victory, as the Bucks pulled away late to win, 110-99.
With just under four and a half minutes to play in the quarter, Wesley Matthews missed a 3-pointer and Kevin Durant came up with the rebound. But before Durant could turn and bring the ball the other way, the referee closest to the bench whistled Nash for a technical.
Nash moved towards the ref with a look of confusion on his face, and started asking questions. He then became incensed and started pointing and yelling at the ref while his assistants and Royce O'Neale tried to calm him down. Their efforts were unsuccessful, as Nash continued raging and was quickly ejected from the ball game.
"Steve twice yelled out a very unsportsmanlike comment that was directed at the officiating, that was the first technical," crew chief Josh Tiven explained in the pool report after the game. "The second technical was for his continual outburst after receiving the first. As per rule, because he received two technicals he's ejected."
Nash wanted a foul call on Bobby Portis for wrestling with Durant on the rebound, but his real frustration stemmed from an earlier play where he felt Giannis Antetokounmpo got away with an offensive foul when he knocked down Patty Mills.
"I was just standing up for our guys," Nash said. "I thought Patty took a forearm in the throat from Giannis right in front of the ref and I didn't think that was fair. I didn't think I was overly demonstrative and I was upset got a tech ... There wasn't an explanation really, it's a lot going on out there. What happened happened, I said my piece on the court and that's really all there is."
This was far more emotion than we normally see from the mild-mannered Nash, who was ejected just twice in 1,337 games (regular season and playoffs) during his 18-season playing career.