Knicks’ Julius Randle ‘P***ed’ After Hearing Refs’ Excuse on Missed Calls

Julius Randle of the Knicks

Getty Julius Randle of the Knicks

Knicks star Julius Randle is 6-foot-8 and 250 pounds, thick and built like a bowling ball. According to him, the referees in Tuesday night’s NBA showdown in Brooklyn against the Nets seem to think that his build is the reason they were not giving him foul calls.

If that hardly seems fair, then Randle agrees. He made that clear in a postgame press conference after the Knicks lost, in which Randle tried to steer clear of bashing the refs—and the fine that comes with that criticism—but could not hide his anger.

“I don’t know what they’re watching or what they’re seeing but you gotta ask them,” Randle said. “Like you said, as aggressive as I played, attacking the paint, I can’t be penalized for just being stronger than people. And that’s the answer that I got today.”

That seemed to surprise the reporters in the room, who followed up with more questions.

“They said because certain contact doesn’t affect me like it affects other players because I’m stronger, they miss the calls,” Randle said.

Asked how he felt about that, Randle said, “It pisses me off even more, to be honest with you because that’s not how you officiate the game.”

Randle’s comments, unfortunately, overshadowed what was his best game in at least a week, as he put up 24 points with nine rebounds and eight assists, as the offense frequently ran through him with Kemba Walker now benched and the Knicks playing, essentially, without a true point guard in the starting five.

Randle Took Only 2 Free-Throws on Tuesday

Indeed, while Randle’s shot chart shows that he took 12 shots in the paint on Tuesday, the refs only gave him a grand total of two shots at the free-throw line, both on and-1s. Nets stars Kevin Durant and James Harden, meanwhile, combined to take 19 free throws.

Randle could be seen yelling at referee Jason Goldenberg after the game.

Part of the issue, from Randle’s point of view, was that the Nets spent significant time with smaller players guarding Randle—the wiry Durant mainly, but Harden, Cam Thomas and James Johnson also spent time defending Randle. Because Randle is thicker and stronger than his defenders, he said, the refs let more go.

“With basketball, usually when smaller players are guarding bigger players, they get away with a lot more,” Randle said. “Certain things are a little more blatant. You know, if you just slap a guy, I don’t care who it is, it is going to affect them. But like I said, I am not going to talk about that. I am going to focus on continuing to try to block that out, play hard, play with energy, lead my team.”

Tom Thibodeau: ‘Something’s Not Right’

If Randle is headed for a fine for knocking the refs in the game, then at least he knows that his coach has his back and is likely looking at a fine, too. Tom Thibodeau was visibly angry after the 2-point loss to Brooklyn, even as he mostly tried to keep his emotions in check.

“I want to watch the film, but,” Thibodeau said, before a long pause. “Something’s not right. I don’t know, I don’t know. I’m watching what’s going on both ways and look, they’re a good team and they played well. But I know Julius was driving that ball pretty darn hard.  And I’m p***ed.”

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