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May 7, 2024 12:29 pm

Wolves coach rips Jamal Murray for tossing heating pad on floor

Jamal Murray

Timberwolves coach Chris Finch blasted Nuggets guard Jamal Murray for throwing a heating pad onto the court in the second quarter of Minnesota’s 106-80 win in Denver on Monday in Game 2 of the Western Conference semifinals.

Finch said it was “dangerous” and “inexcusable” that Murray — who was stationed on the bench — threw the object onto the floor during live game action. Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns was accepting a pass from Kyle Anderson at the time of the incident with 4:41 remaining in the second quarter.

Nuggets guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope picked up the heating pad and tossed it out of play without the officials being aware.

“I was the lead official, and I didn’t notice it was on the floor or where it came from until Towns scored,” crew chief Marc Davis told a pool reporter, per ESPN. “We weren’t aware it had come from the bench. If we would have been aware it came from the bench, we could have reviewed it under the hostile act trigger. The penalty would have been a technical foul.”

Finch tried to lobby with the officials with the respect to the potential safety issue.

“We tried to impress upon (the referees) there probably aren’t many fans in the building that have a heat pack, so it probably had to come from the bench, which they found logical,” Finch said. “I’m sure it was a mistake and an oversight and nothing intentional by the officiating at all, but certainly can’t allow that to happen.”

Murray, 27, made just 3 of 18 shots from the floor and finished with eight points, 13 rebounds and four turnovers for the defending champion Nuggets, who trail 2-0 in the best-of-seven series. Game 3 is Friday in Minneapolis.

–Field Level Media

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