If you're partial to sprinkling your everyday conversations with a "Back in my day, the NBA wasn't so soft," you've come to the right place.
With a little more than four minutes remaining in the second quarter, Stephenson received a handoff well outside the three-point line. As Allen looked around to survey the play behind him, Stephenson palmed the ball with his right hand and pushed it towards Allen's head before retracting it when Allen swiped at it. Although no contact was made between ball and head, Stephenson was whistled for a technical foul by referee Josh Tiven, who was standing just a few feet away.
Under Rule No. 12, Section 5, Item D of the NBA's Rule Book, a technical foul can be assessed for all sorts of "unsportsmanlike" conduct violations, including: Disrespectfully addressing an official; Physically contacting an official; Overt actions indicating resentment to a call; Use of profanity; A coach entering onto the court without permission of an official; A deliberately-thrown elbow or any attempted physical act with no con-tact involved; and Taunting. Presumably, Stephenson's action falls in the "taunting" category.
Stephenson shook off the unusual call to finish with 13 points (on 5-for-11 shooting), 12 assists and 11 rebounds in 34 minutes, marking the first triple-double of his four-year career.
Michael Jordan's ball fakes just rolled over in their grave.
Indiana improved to 8-0 with the win; Memphis dropped to 3-4 with the loss.target="_blank">Top video via YouTube user NBAShowtimeHD5 | Bottom video via YouTube user TheChicagoNation