Does anyone have any idea what Raptors forward Amir Johnson is trying to accomplish in the video above? This has to be the most pointless thing any player has ever been T’ed up and thrown out of an NBA game for.
Based on the evidence we see in the video (and considering how few people watch Raptors games, finding an eyewitness to testify about what really happened will be pretty hard), Johnson tried to grab the ball after a Trail Blazers player took a free throw. The official also grabbed the ball, as the official always does, and then the two of them played a brief game of tug-of-war. Johnson then said something that the ref didn’t like, was ejected from the game and then threw his mouthpiece at him (which will surely result in a fine and suspension) as his teammates tried to retrain him.
So… what the hell? You can see Johnson’s teammate, DeMar DeRozan mouth the words “what are you doing?” at one point. Why would any player ever try to fight the referee for the ball after a free throw? There is no conceivable scenario in which that would make sense. It looks like a scene from pre-school, with two toddlers fighting over a toy.
The 4-18 Raptors are already the biggest joke in the NBA and this incident certainly isn’t going to help things. Johnson is one of the franchise’s supposed premiere players — they gave him a five-year, $32 million deal back in 2010. It’s hard to imagine that he or any other players, coaches and front office staff that form the core of the team will be in Toronto beyond this season.