Raptors’ Fred VanVleet blasts official after loss to Clippers

Oh YoungmisukESPN staff writer4 minute reading

Fred VanVleet gets T’d up against the Clippers

Raptors guard Fred VanVleet talks to referee Ben Taylor after being called a technical foul vs. Clippers.

LOS ANGELES – Toronto Raptors point guard Fred VanVleet blasted referee Ben Taylor for his referee during the Raptors’ 108-100 loss to the LA Clippers on Wednesday night at Crypto.com Arena.

VanVleet didn’t hold back in his postgame press conference and will likely receive a hefty fine from the NBA.

“I don’t care, I’ll take a fine, I don’t care,” VanVleet said. “I thought Ben Taylor was terrible tonight. I think most nights, you know, out of the three (officials), there’s one or two that just played up. It’s been like a couple of games in a row.

“(Monday’s loss) Denver was tough, obviously. You come out tonight, compete pretty hard and I get a bulls— technology that changes the whole dynamic of the game, changed the whole flow of the game.

“Most of the umpires try hard. I like a lot of the umpires, they try hard, they’re pretty fair and communicate well. And then you have the others who just want to be d—s and just kind of f- — played up. And nobody comes to see that s—. They come to see the players.”

The Raptors were called for 23 fouls to the Clippers’ 18, but LA had 31 free throw attempts compared to 14 for Toronto. VanVleet was whistled for a technical foul by Taylor with 7:02 left in the third quarter. The Clippers were up seven at the time.

While Toronto got within 70-68 later in the quarter, the Clippers pushed the lead back to 12 short before the start of the fourth.

The third-quarter technical was VanVleet’s eighth of the season.

The Raptors have had two straight games with technical fouls in the second half. During their 118-113 loss at Denver on Monday, official Scott Foster called Scottie Barnes a technical foul before ejecting him with 28 seconds left in the fourth quarter. The Nuggets led by one at the time.

Foster said in the postgame pool report that Barnes was ejected on a technical because “he used language that directly questioned the integrity of the crew.”

Three of VanVleet’s eight technicals have come from Taylor, while another comes from another official in a game Taylor worked. VanVleet said that “at a certain point as a player, you feel like it’s personal, and that’s never a good place to be.”

He was asked if anything he said Wednesday night led to him receiving a technician.

“There have been certain times this year where I feel like our team is getting consumed by the way the whistle is going,” VanVleet said. “Especially after the night we just had in Denver, the way it ended, so there were a couple of calls earlier that we all disagreed on. And if I say to my team, ‘Come on, guys, let’s keep going with playing (through) bull—-‘ and that warrants a technician, I think it’s a little bit crazy. Like what are we doing? Do you know what I mean?

“And obviously there’s a fine line, I understand that. But I think the jurisdiction and the power ride that we’ve been on this year with some of our officials in this league is getting out of hand and I want take my fine for talking about it, but it’s f—ing ridiculous.”

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