By Ben Golliver
Former NBA player Kendall Gill has been suspended from his position as a Bulls analyst for Comcast SportsNet Chicago after he reportedly punched a colleague in a dispute over a controversial call earlier this week.
The Chicago Tribune reported Friday that Gill will not work for CSN Chicago for the remainder of the 2012-13 season.
"We have made a decision to not have Kendall Gill appear on our air for the remainder of the Bulls season," the station said. "We will re-evaluate our current position on this matter during the off-season.”
On Monday, the Bulls lost to the Nuggets in overtime on a controversial offensive basket interference call against Joakim Noah. The referees appeared to make the correct call and the NBA league office reportedly claimed afterward that the officials did, in fact, follow the correct procedure in using the video review to reach their conclusion.
Gill said on the air after the game that the officials had blown the call. ChicagoBusiness.com reported that Gill got into a "physical altercation" on Tuesday with a fellow analyst who disagreed with Gill that the referees had jobbed the Bulls.
Comcast SportsNet Chicago Bulls analyst Kendall Gill has been removed temporarily from his on-air duties after a physical altercation with Big Ten Network analyst Tim Doyle in the CSN newsroom Tuesday evening.
Mr. Gill confronted Mr. Doyle in the newsroom over critical comments he had made on the air about Mr. Gill's analysis of the controversial final moments of Monday's Chicago Bulls-Denver Nuggets game. The referees ruled that what at first appeared to be a last-second basket by the Bulls would not be allowed, thus giving the win to the Nuggets.
Mr. Gill approached Mr. Doyle and called him out for his comments, which escalated to a shoving match and ultimately Mr. Gill throwing a punch at Mr. Doyle. The two bumped up against a sign on the wall and a small amount of blood was drawn (though it was unclear exactly how) before the two were separated.
Gill, 44, was the No. 5 pick in the 1990 NBA draft. He averaged 13.4 points, 4.1 rebounds, three assists and 1.6 steals in a 15-year career that included stops with the Hornets, SuperSonics, Nets, Heat, Timberwolves, Bulls and Bucks. Gill took up boxing after he retired, telling Sports Illustrated in 2005 that the sport had become his "passion."
To recap the controversy from Monday's game: Noah tipped a Marco Belinelli jumper into the hoop in the game's closing seconds. However, a portion of the ball clearly appeared to be in the imaginary cylinder as the shot descended, necessitating the offensive basket interference call. The Bulls were upset because the referees didn't appear to initially make the call on the floor, which is required to initiate a video review. The game went to a timeout after Noah's tip and the referees conducted their review during the stoppage of play, ruling Noah's potential game-winner basket no good. CBSSports.com reported Tuesday that a league office review concluded that referee Ken Mauer did deem the play offensive basket interference before initiating the video review.