MIAMI -- When Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle joined The Ben & Skin show on 103.3 FM ESPN last week after wrapping up the Western Conference championship, the boys sent the coach off with one last question:
Was there anything he wanted them to pass along to their next guest, Mavs center Tyson Chandler?
As a matter of fact, there was. Carlisle gave what seemed to be something of a half tongue-in-cheek, half dead-serious plea when he told them to please tell Chandler to stop fouling and to stop getting hit with technical fouls.
If he wasn’t 100 percent dead serious, he certainly had the right to be.
Chandler rides his emotions on the floor, and there’s nothing wrong that as long as he keeps his emotions in check and doesn’t hurt the team. In the West finals, Chandler found himself becoming frustrated with foul trouble -- he got called for 20 in the five games and fouled out of Game 5 -- and with scowling Thunder center Kendrick Perkins, who dragged Chandler into a double-technical just 70 seconds into the series.
The league rescinded that one after reviewing it and determining that Chandler played no role in the early dust-up.
However, Chandler earned two more technical fouls in the series to give him six in 15 playoff games. Two have been rescinded, leaving his total at four. Three more and he will pay with an automatic one-game suspension, a fate the Mavs can’t afford at any point during the NBA Finals against the Miami Heat.
After his final technical in Game 4 -- he landed a blow after again tangling with the ruffian Perkins -- Chandler vowed not to get another.
“I know what type of game I need to play and I’m going to keep my focus and play the game smart, but I’m still going to play with my with my emotions,” Chandler said. “That’s just me. It got us here, I can’t stop now.”
Carlisle said he’s not terribly concerned about Chandler going off the deep end with the stakes at an all-time high. Although, clearly it’s on the coach’s mind or why else bring it up for public consumption on a radio talk show?
“With each passing playoff series he gets more and more experience in these situations, and I look for him to play his best basketball in the Finals,” Carlisle said. “A lot of his technicals have been rescinded. There is a tendency for officials to react quickly when something happens and a lot of times you don’t really see the whole story unless you rewind it on film.”
Half of Chandler’s eight technicals during the regular season were rescinded, making his overall total: 14 technicals with six having been rescinded. Still, a technical only becomes rescinded the following day after a review by the league. The technical free throw awarded, no matter at what point of the game or how damaging, stands.
Chandler shouldn’t be induced into as many emotional-type situations since Miami doesn’t play a lumbering, physical center who seeks out confrontation. Chandler will likely see plenty of time against forward Chris Bosh and 6-foot-9 center Joel Anthony.
Still, Chandler said he hopes the officiating crews have taken note of his technical foul history mostly as the non-initiator before reacting to a situation for a quick T.
“I just hope they take a look at it and see that a lot of it is not me and that’s why they’ve been able to rescind so many of them,” Chandler said. “But sometimes it’s hard for a referee out there, I understand that. You don’t get the proper angle and this and that. But since they have seen the past and have seen a lot of times that I’m not the initiator, hopefully they’ll pay a little more attention to it.”