The Boston Celtics punched their ticket to the Eastern Conference finals Sunday, but couldn’t avoid some officiating controversy in the process.
Taking down the 76ers in Game 7, Celtics star Jaylen Brown caught the bad end of NBA official Scott Foster’s whistle after staring down Philadelphia’s bench in the second quarter. It was quickly revealed that Brown was justified, doing so only because 76ers forward Georges Niang grabbed his leg while both teams were in transition, an attempt to keep Brown from quickly making it to the other end of the floor.
However, Foster initially assessed a technical foul to Brown, which upon further review resulted in a tech for him and Niang. Now less than 24 hours after Boston’s 112-88 victory, the NBA rescinded Brown’s tech.
“Jaylen Brown’s (BOS) technical foul (6:50, 2nd qtr) from the game on 5/14/23 has been rescinded upon league office review,” according to a league-provided announcement Monday.
Brown, afterward, offered a forgiving response after Niang’s bone-headed move.
“I don’t think Niang’s a bad guy or anything. I work out with him in the offseason, I just think he got caught up in the intensity and made a play. And I responded to it,” Brown said postgame. “I don’t know which way I should have responded to it, but if I didn’t do anything they probably would have played on.”
While Niang and the Sixers clean out their lockers, Brown and the Celtics next prepare to face the Miami Heat in a best-of-seven battle for an NBA Finals appearance. The series starts Wednesday night at TD Garden.