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NBA notebook: Raptors coach fined for criticizing refs | News

The NBA fined Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse $15,000 on Tuesday in the wake of his public criticism of the officials following Sunday’s loss to the Denver Nuggets.

Nurse said it was “ridiculous” that Raptors star Kawhi Leonard went to the free-throw line just four times in the 95-86 loss to the Nuggets.

“Tonight was a very severe case of a guy who was playing great, taking it to the rim, and just absolutely getting held, grabbed, poked, slapped, hit and everything. And they refused to call any of it,” Nurse said after the game. “It was unbelievable to me. You can’t tell me one of the best players in the league takes a hundred hits in that game and shoots four free throws.”

Leonard tallied 29 points and 14 rebounds against the Nuggets, finishing 4-for-4 from the line.

–The NBA fined Atlanta Hawks guard Kent Bazemore $10,000 for bouncing the ball into the stands during Sunday night’s loss at Brooklyn.

The incident occurred with about nine minutes left in the fourth quarter of the Hawks’ 144-127 loss to the Nets at Barclays Center.

After a layup by Brooklyn’s Ed Davis, Bazemore collected the loose ball and slammed it to the floor in apparent frustration. It bounced into the seats behind the basket, and he was assessed a technical foul.

–The Phoenix Suns waived guard Austin Rivers, one day after he was obtained in the trade that sent Trevor Ariza to the Washington Wizards.

According to an ESPN report, the Suns will be responsible for paying about $8 million of what is owed Rivers if he clears waivers. His $12.65 million cap hit will give the team $33.5 million in dead money this season, which is tops in the NBA.

Multiple reports said Rivers is expected to sign with the Memphis Grizzlies, the other team in the original three-team trade involving Ariza and Rivers that fell apart after miscommunication over the other players to be involved.

–The annual Forbes list of America’s 10 wealthiest celebrities includes two men with NBA connections who need no introduction.

Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan is the highest-rated sports figure on the list at No. 4 with a net worth is $1.7 billion, up $300 million from 2017. According to Forbes, his wealth is primarily “derived from his sneaker fortune and a 90% stake in the increasingly valuable Charlotte Hornets. His stake in the basketball team is valued at an estimated $800 million.”

Just behind His Airness but at little more than half the net worth ($900 million) is rapper/entrepreneur Jay-Z. Forbes says the former Brooklyn Nets minority owner and founder of Roc Nation Sports agency saw his net worth climb $90 million in the last 12 months. One of Roc Nation’s high-profile clients is two-time NBA Finals MVP Kevin Durant.

–Field Level Media

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