The Toronto Raptors seemed to be on their approach to one in every of their most spectacular wins of the season on Monday, outplaying the Western Convention-leading Denver Nuggets for the overwhelming majority of the night.
However issues unravelled for Toronto within the dying minutes, with the group discovering itself on the incorrect finish of back-to-back coach’s challenges earlier than a gentle foul name on Jakob Poeltl led to a Scottie Barnes ejection. Denver would hit the following free-throws to ice the 118-113 win.
It is unclear precisely what Barnes stated to the officers to warrant the choice, however his physique language did not appear to be something outlandish, particularly given the one-point rating differential with underneath 30 seconds remaining within the contest. It was the primary time in Barnes’ younger profession that he was tossed from a recreation.
“I used to be simply saying one thing to myself and I suppose he took offence to it, so simply kicked me out of the sport,” Barnes instructed reporters.
Referee Scott Foster stated the reigning Rookie of the 12 months was ejected for utilizing verbiage which “directly questioned the integrity of the crew.”
Raptors head coach Nick Nurse was visibly annoyed on a number of events down the stretch of the sport and was dissatisfied with the whistle, particularly after reviewing the calls in query on movie after the ultimate buzzer.
“I feel it was a fantastic recreation that regarded prefer it was coming right down to a fantastic ending and it was slightly bit unlucky we did not get to see an excellent ending,” Nurse stated. “Particularly on the one Scottie acquired ejected on, there was nothing there, nothing.
“Scottie wasn’t concerned, they referred to as the foul on [Poeltl] and there was nothing there.”
Regardless of the tough-luck loss, Nurse was nonetheless impressed with the Raptors’ effort in one of many NBA’s hardest arenas to play in.
“We play like that, we’re in all probability going to have the ability to beat anyone,” Nurse stated. “We in all probability outplayed them and executed very well and all these issues. We simply didn’t fairly get it completed on the very, very finish.”
Maybe the Raptors can use this defeat as motivation for a troublesome week forward. Toronto has street dates with the Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers earlier than returning residence for a rematch with the Nuggets subsequent Tuesday.
Toronto presently sits ninth within the Japanese Convention and is 5 video games again of the Brooklyn Nets for the sixth seed with 16 video games remaining. Seeds seven by way of 10 in every convention are relegated to the play-in event.