NBA Fines Timberwolves’ Rudy Gobert $100,000 For Criticizing Refs

Rudy Gobert, Victor Wembanyama, San Antonio Spurs, Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA News
Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA has levied a $100,000 fine against Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert for his conduct directed at an official and subsequent criticism of officiating after a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. The incident, which included a money gesture towards referee Scott Foster, occurred during the closing moments of a game that ultimately saw the Timberwolves fall 113-104 in overtime.

NBA executive vice president and head of basketball operations Joe Dumars emphasized that the decision to fine Gobert was influenced by his history of actions deemed detrimental to the league.

Gobert’s gesture, which suggested Foster might be biased, resulted in a technical foul being called by official Natalie Sago after Foster missed the act. This technical contributed to the Cavaliers tying the game and pushing it into overtime.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Rudy Gobert, Minnesota Timberwolves, Cleveland Cavaliers Updates

After the game, Gobert was open about his actions, expressing concern over the influence of sports betting on game outcomes. “I’ll bite the bullet again,” Gobert said. “I’ll be the bad guy. I’ll take the fine, but I think it’s hurting our game. I know the betting and all that is becoming bigger and bigger, but it shouldn’t feel that way.”

Assistant coach Micah Nori, stepping in for an ill Chris Finch, labeled Gobert’s actions as unacceptable, especially given the timing within the game. Despite understanding Gobert’s frustration, Nori underscored the need for smarter decision-making in critical moments.

Acknowledging his mistake, Gobert admitted his response was immature and detrimental to his team’s chances. “My reaction, which I think was the truth, but it wasn’t the time to react that way,” he stated. “It cost my team the game. It was an immature reaction.”

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Rudy Gobert, Minnesota Timberwolves, Cleveland Cavaliers Updates

This marks the fourth occasion Gobert has faced fines for publicly criticizing officiating, highlighting ongoing tensions between the player and league officials regarding game integrity and officiating standards.

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