On Monday, the New York Knicks fell to the Houston Rockets in a game decided by a crucial whistle. With the score all knotted up, Knicks guard Jalen Brunson was called for a foul with 0.3 seconds left after attempting to contest Aaron Holiday’s game-winning shot attempt. Holiday then made his free throws, sealing the win for the Rockets.
This was precisely the reason why Tom Thibodeau was visibly irritated during the press conference. Showing restraint when bombarded with questions about the officials, the veteran head coach calmly asked for more consistency from the referees.
“The thing with the officials is…this is the way I feel about that in general,” Thibodeau said, via New York Basketball. “I don’t really care how tight the game is called. You can call it tight or you can call it loose. I just would like the consistency to be the same. They have a job, they have to control and manage the game. That’s their number one responsibility. So they have to use their judgment, and I have respect for that. It didn’t go our way tonight.”
What makes the loss even more heartbreaking for the Knicks was how the team was down 16 at one point during the game. They managed to claw their way back, only to fall short in one of the most frustrating ways possible. For now, Tom Thibodeau and the team regroup and look to bounce back against the Orlando Magic on Wednesday.