Previous ArticlesBulls take 3-0 lead over Pacers
Foster’s fouls upgraded to flagrants
by Sam Smith
Posted on Apr 22
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It’s not like Derrick Rose said it that way, but there was a sense in his comments Friday about Indiana’s physical play of “That’s all you got?”
“I’m happy I don’t have any stitches or anything,” said Rose. “As long as I’m OK, I could care less.”
Rose was reacting to word Saturday the NBA had changed two personal fouls on Jeff “the malevolent” Foster to flagrant fouls. Foster will not be suspended for Game 4 of the series Saturday. The fouls were against Rose midway through the third quarter, which drew a reaction from Rose and some talk among players, and a shot to the head of Luol Deng. Deng was down for a minute, but reported no after effects as the Bulls went up 3-0 in the best of seven series.
If the two had been called flagrants in the game, Foster could be suspended. For now he has two flagrant foul points for the playoffs. Four means a suspension.
Pacers coach Frank Vogel Friday told reporters at the Pacers’ practice he believed the fouls were “good, clean playoff fouls” along the order of a no layups playoff rule most teams have. Of course, Rose then made a layup to win the game. Vogel said the Pacers merely were trying to protect their basket, not hurt anyone.
The foul against Deng seemed more a flagrant, though against Rose Foster did go in more with his body than to attempt to block the shot and make a basketball play, which is the criterion for a flagrant foul.
Though if Jeff Foster is too much into your game plan you may not be as good as you think you are.
Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said, “Let the league make those decisions. We’re just getting ready for the next game. That’s all. We’re getting to the (foul) line. That’s a big part of what we do (93-62 edge). We want to take advantage of it and we’re going to continue to take advantage of it.”
The Bulls have not wanted to get into retaliating against the Pacers and get taken out of what they do on offense, and particularly the big edge in free throws made. The Bulls have outscored the Pacers in the three games by a total of 15 points. They have a 76-48 edge in free throws made. Equalizing that potentially would leave the Bulls trailing 3-0.
Plus, Thibodeau has told the team not to get involved in skirmishes and draw fourth quarter technical fouls given the slight margin of victory in each game. So he has primarily counseled restraint, though players have talked among themselves about the well timed hard screen.
Rose added that if the league is reviewing calls, he’d like a review of his two technical fouls this season.
“I’ll see if they can give me my money back,” Rose said with a laugh. “As long as we won the game.”