Chicago Bulls forward Taj Gibson has been fined $25,000 for verbal abuse of a game official during Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Semifinal series against the Miami Heat, the NBA announced on Friday. He did not receive a suspension.
Gibson was ejected in the fourth quarter of the 37-point blowout loss, along with teammate Joakim Noah, after arguing with referees. Scott Foster ejected both players, and Gibson had to be restrained by assistant coaches and escorted to the locker room after being tossed from the contest.
The situation escalated after Chris Andersen blocked a hook shot by Gibson in the lane. The Bulls' forward wanted a goaltending call, but he didn't get it. Then he and Noah started to work the officials a bit and were hit with technicals. Noah was not fined for his role in the dispute.
Game 2 featured 51 fouls, nine technicals, two ejections and two flagrant-one foul calls -- as Mario Chalmers' neck grab on Joakim Noah was upgraded to a flagrant-one after the game. Things could get very interesting in Game 3 if both teams play with the same type of intensity:
Tom Thibodeau already laid the groundwork for a discussion on the officiating, as he told reporters that he knows the Bulls "are not going to get calls." The numbers and splits in the series don't exactly back him up, but the crowd at the United Center won't necessarily be looking for fair and equitable decisions.