knicks julius randle
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Julius Randle reveals the reason why referees aren’t giving him foul calls this year

The New York Knicks came away on the wrong end of a two-point game against the Brooklyn Nets. It was the kind of game that could have gone to the Knicks if one or two plays went their way.

In tight games, the refereeing is magnified. Julius Randle isn’t happy about the way he’s being officiated. He sounded off on the refs in his postgame presser.

“You’ve gotta ask them,” Randle said in reference to the referees. “I don’t know what they’re watching or what they’re seeing, but you’ve gotta ask them. Like you said, as aggressive as I played, attacking the paint, you know I can’t be penalized just for being stronger than people. That’s the answer that I got today.”

Randle expanded on that comment, saying the refs told him that they miss calls because he’s stronger than his opponents. He only went to the line twice on Tuesday night, both on and-ones. The Nets took 25 free throws compared to New York’s 12.

Unsurprisingly, Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau wasn’t thrilled with the officiating either. He sounded off on the refs as well.

“I’m watching what’s going on both ways,” Thibodeau explained. “They’re a good team, they played well, but I know Julius was driving that ball pretty darn hard and I’m pissed.”

Nets point guard James Harden might be the loudest critic of the officials this season. The change in officiating to eliminate non-basketball moves gave Harden fits early in the season. He’s still not a huge fan of the refs, but he’s starting to figure it out.

Harden was 9-for-10 from the free-throw line on Tuesday night and his free throw rate is climbing back towards his career rate of .522.

NBA players and coaches are always going to have issues with the officiating. In a bang-bang game like basketball, there are bound to be missed calls. But for guys like Randle and Harden, it’s more than a few missed calls here and there.

We will have to wait and see if the officiating on Randle changes.