‘Small-market teams deserve an equal shot

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NEW YORK — When Rick Carlisle was asked about the illegal screen called against Myles Turner after the Pacers’ Game 1 loss to the Knicks, he initially demurred. He did not hit the ball hard against forward Aaron Nesmith, and the umpires agreed that the play was fouled because Nesmith hit the ball with his hand.

“I don’t want to talk about the authorities,” Carlisle said Monday night. “We don’t expect to get calls here.”

But after the Pacers’ 130-121 Game 2 loss to the Knicks on Wednesday night, in which he committed two technical fouls and was ejected in the game’s final minute, the first thing he wanted to talk about was empowerment, and he did so without prompting. . He believes that the entire performance of the first two games showed that the fast bowlers did not get a fair shake.

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“I always tell our guys not to talk about the officials,” Carlisle said. “But we deserve a fair shot. There’s no consistent balance, and that’s disappointing. Credit New York for the physicality they play. But their physicality is rewarded, ours is punished. Time after time. I’m the one who’s really disappointed.”

Carlisle took it a step further and suggested that the odds he sees have to do with where the two teams involved play. New York is obviously the largest market in the country, while Indianapolis is one of the bottom 10 NBA cities.

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“Small-market teams deserve an equal shot,” Carlisle said. “They deserve a fair shot wherever they play.”

Carlisle began his postgame press conference by describing the process by which teams submit clips of foul calls to the league office. He said pitchers always rate games they believe are “unbalanced,” but during a playoff series when one team submits clips, the other team sees what they submitted.

“There were 29 plays in Game 1 that we thought were clearly called the wrong way,” Carlisle said. “I decided not to submit them because I felt we would get a more balanced whistle tonight. It just didn’t feel like it.”

ESPN reports that the Pacers have made 49 calls since Game 2, and 29 of the 78 Carlisle mentioned they felt were incorrect.

Carlisle specifically called the game with 5:08 to play in the third quarter, when Knicks guard Josh Hart pushed past Pacers All-Star guard Tyrese Halliburton. No mistake was made in the play. Notably, Halliburton has been listed as questionable for the past three games with lower back spasms.

“The whole world knows Halliburton’s got a bad back,” Carlisle said. “Hart comes up and pushes him on the back. It’s all over Twitter now. Some people have shown it to me. (Official) JP DeRosa sees it right. You can see. He has vision for the play. He (Hart) pushes the tie to the right and there’s no whistle behind.

Carlisle beat the officials with 1:20 left in the game’s final play. Knicks center Isaiah Hardenstein was called for a double-dunk play with 1:19 left in the opening period, but after Hardenstein and Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau argued against it, the officials agreed and overturned the call. Hardenstein didn’t appear to double dribble — it’s debatable that he might have been called for a carry but he didn’t appear to take the ball with two hands — but the Pacers seemed particularly flustered following the kick. Ball against Nesmith that the play cannot be reviewed or changed. Officials did not go on a review of this call, but they still determined that one call was incorrect.

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“One guy said he never double dribbled,” Carlisle said. “It looked to me like the tips went out and argued, and then they changed it. That’s what it looked like. I can only go by what I see.”

Carlisle spent most of the 41-second period while his assistants tried to push him away, and that’s when he was called for his first technical foul. He kept going, and with 33 seconds left he was called for another and was ejected.

“Two techs, you have to make a stand for your guys,” Carlisle said. “You have to stand up for what’s right and what’s wrong. That’s it.”

Carlisle said he will submit the clips to the NBA’s league office this time.

“We’re going to submit these tonight,” Carlisle said. “New York can prepare. They can see.”

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