AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- Detroit Pistons point guard Reggie Jackson believes there should be a system in place for referees to be fined, be suspended or lose their jobs in the wake of Sunday's frantic finish in a Game 4, season-ending 100-98 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Without implicitly stating it in the postgame news conference, Jackson, who fired what would have been a game-winning 3-pointer, believes he was fouled by Cavs point guard Kyrie Irving on the final shot of the game.
"We got a stop, no timeouts. Kyrie decided to pick up early," Jackson said of the play. "Thought I cleared some spacing, went to take a good shot, tried to find a good look. I just think refs need to have some type of system in line ... fines, suspensions, being fired. Same thing happens to us.
"Make bad plays or questionable, you're not really being productive to the sport. Things should have consequences, just like the players. That's about [all] I've got to say on that."
Jackson, who scored 13 points and contributed 12 assists, also believes the gap between his young Pistons team and the top-seeded Cavs is not as wide as many believe.
"I don't think it's too far of a gap," he said. "I think we had three close games that we lost. And lost a fourth [in which] I don't think the score necessarily reflects how the game went. They made a great spurt in Game 2 to push it to a point where they won ... I think we just played hard. We competed. We didn't back down. We were confident.
"Unfortunately, we didn't get a win this series. Unfortunately, we're not the team advancing. But I think it says something about us. We have to go ahead, learn from this, move on. Use it as hunger. Use it for fuel. And everybody has to take this into the back of their mind, getting ready for workouts in the summer and then getting ready to come back next season."