INDIANAPOLIS -- It's not often that one call has the power to infuriate the entire Chicago Bulls locker room, but that's exactly what happened late Monday night.
With the Indiana Pacers leading 98-94, Bulls guard Marco Belinelli missed a jumper with about 1:30 left and then it caromed around under the basket, appearing to be thrown off Pacers center Roy Hibbert by Belinelli. The problem for the Bulls was that the refs ruled that the Bulls last touched the ball and awarded the possession to the Pacers.
What angered the Bulls was that the officials did not review the play, which came in the last two minutes of the game.
"(Referee) Mike Callahan went and asked him and he said there was no need," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said. "It's reviewable under two minutes."
Thibodeau said the under two-minute review policy was up to the officials.
"It's subjective," he said. "If there's any question supposedly you do it."
Bulls guard Nate Robinson said all the Bulls were asking for a review.
"What's the rule?" Robinson said. "Under two minutes you're supposed to review right? It speaks for itself, man.
"We all (asked for a review). For us, we go out there and play hard, we don't be lazy on calls. We go out and play as hard as we can and for them not to review it, to me I just feel like that was just being lazy. Not taking anything from the referees because I know that's one of the hardest jobs to do is to officiate a game but for them not review it, knowing the rules? That's just self explanatory. It just shows that either they didn't want to do it or they're just being lazy.”
Despite his frustration, Thibodeau did not want to blame the officials for the loss.
"I thought we got a tough whistle and that happens," he said. "We had some calls that we should have had that went against us -- that's part of it. We have to have the mental toughness to get through that. We can't allow that frustration to lead us into not executing or recklessly fouling. To me, those are the things you don't want to do. We'll learn from it and move on."
Homecoming for Teague: Marquis Teague scored two points and had two assists in eight minutes Monday night -- marking the first time he played in his hometown in the NBA. Teague went to Pike High School in the Indianapolis area.
The last word: Bulls forward Taj Gibson on playing the Pacers: "It's a rivalry. We understand that every time we step on the court these two teams have something to prove. They're trying to win a division, we're trying to win a division. We're trying to get better and help our teams move forward in the swing of things and right now they've got the two wins on us. They're feeling good, but we're looking forward to playing them again late."