The Nets’ trolling to Giannis Antetokounmpo’s free throw routine has to come to an end.
According to Peter Botte of the New York Post, the NBA ordered the Nets to stop timing Antetokoumpo’s free throws using a scoreboard timer. According to Botte, “The league does not advocate for teams that encourage making fun of other players.”
Barclays Center staff started the timer for Game 1 of the Nets vs. Bucks. It came after Antetokounmpo committed a rare free throw violation on the Milwaukee series sweep.
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As a general rule, an NBA player must shoot the ball on a free throw within 10 seconds of receiving it from the referee. Due to Antetokounmpo’s long routine, the allotted time is often cut or missed.
However, he is rarely called for a violation. Therefore, the timer was started to cheer the crowd as the Greek Freak approached the deadline for his release and to demonstrate to the referees when, in fact, he had taken more than 10 seconds.
You can see how it worked through the video below.
While the timer may have energized the available fans, it did little to impact the coaches during the game. Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said he noticed people were watching the Jumbotron, but he was more focused on the game than anything else.
“There was a time when I felt like people were looking at the Jumbotron, but they really didn’t know why,” Budenholzer said. “You never know what’s going on there, and it’s rare that you can get a hint of something.”
Still, the NBA has shut that down for now. The Nets faithful will have to find another way to distract Giannis from the line if the Bucks return to Brooklyn for Game 5.
The Nets currently lead the series 2-0 and earned a 39-point victory over the Bucks in Game 2. Game 3 will begin at 7:30 pm ET Thursday night in Milwaukee.