Monday, June 19, 2006
Updated: June 20, 8:58 AM ET
Nowitzki fined $5,000 for kicking ball into stands
ESPN.com news services
Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki was fined $5,000 for kicking a basketball into the stands at the conclusion of Sunday night's Game 5 of the NBA Finals, the NBA announced Monday.
Nowitzki, who scored 20 points in Dallas' 101-100 overtime loss, kicked the ball into
the stands as he left the court. On his way to the locker room, he
slammed against a stationary bike, then kicked at something else.
Nowitzki was upset following a controversial ending to a classic battle in Miami. First, Nowitzki was called for a touch foul with just under two seconds left and the Mavs up one to put Dwyane Wade on the free-throw line.
After Wade hit the first free throw, the referees signaled that Dallas had called its final timeout, then they waved the players back and said no timeout had been called. But referee Joe DeRosa stepped in and said a Dallas player, apparently Josh Howard, had indeed used up the Mavs' final timeout. Coach Avery Johnson protested vehemently, but to no avail, and Wade calmly knocked down the next one.
"Josh Howard goes to Joe DeRosa and not only once, but twice, asked for a timeout. Forced to call it, simple as that," crew chief Joe Crawford told a pool reporter.
Howard disputed that version.
Dallas owner Mark Cuban was also irate over the game's ending. After the final buzzer, Cuban ran onto the court to vent at DeRosa, then stared down and screamed toward commissioner David Stern and a group of league officials, from the court, then the stands.
Cuban was still boiling about a half-hour later during a testy interview with reporters.
He also wrote a blog entry Monday explaining why he used profanity during a response to a question about whether this was the worst loss he'd endured.
The NBA has not yet announced any disciplinary action against Cuban.
Information from ESPN Insider Chris Sheridan and The Associated Press was used in this report.