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George fined $35,000 for publicly criticizing officials

FACING OFF: Dwight Howard of the Rockets looks for an opening against DeAndre Jordan of the Clippers in a Western Conference matchup. For the result, visit tampabay.com/sports.

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FACING OFF: Dwight Howard of the Rockets looks for an opening against DeAndre Jordan of the Clippers in a Western Conference matchup. For the result, visit tampabay.com/sports.

NEW YORK — Pacers forward Paul George was fined $35,000 by the league on Saturday for public criticism of officiating and using profanity in a live television interview.

The penalty comes less than 24 hours after George blasted officials following the Pacers' 104-97 victory over the visiting Nets on Friday night.

"The stripes (were) terrible," George told TV network Fox Sports Indiana.

Throughout the game, George appeared visibly frustrated with officials over calls that didn't go his way.

Late in the third quarter, Pacers coach Frank Vogel received a technical after saying George was fouled on a drive to the basket. Vogel declined to comment on the officiating after the game.

On Friday, George told the Indianapolis Star that a disparity in foul calls "has been going on for a long time."

George finished with 23 points and 10 rebounds but also committed seven turnovers.

George, a two-time All-Star, was fined $10,000 by the league in October for publicly criticizing officials after Indiana's season-opening loss to the Raptors.

Irving: 'I'm back'

CLEVELAND — Kyrie Irving will make his season debut today when the Cavaliers host the 76ers. Shortly before speaking with reporters, Irving sent a Twitter message saying "I'm back.''

Irving has been out with a fractured kneecap he suffered in Game 1 of the NBA Finals. Coach David Blatt said the team will monitor Irving's minutes, but the point guard is expected to start.

Irving had been expected to come back earlier this week, but said there were medical hurdles to overcome and he and the team wanted to make sure he was 100 percent.

The All-Star has felt nerves before games, but none like the ones he's certain to have as he completes his comeback.

"This is kind of a new chapter," he said following Saturday's practice. "It'll be a different experience, but just the amount of practice, the amount of time I put in, the amount of work that is coming to fruition and I'm just excited that it can happen now."

Late Friday: Pistons top Bulls in four overtimes

CHICAGO — Andre Drummond didn't have to say much to describe this four-overtime marathon. He could have stopped after the first word.

"Wow," he said. "I don't have any words for that one."

Drummond had 33 points and 21 rebounds, Reggie Jackson added 31 points and 13 assists, and the Pistons outlasted the Bulls 147-144 late Friday.

The Pistons scored the opening seven points of the fourth overtime and hung on in the final seconds. Jimmy Butler, who scored a career-high 43, made an off-balance 3-pointer to cut it to 145-144 with 4.7 seconds left. The Bulls immediately fouled Jackson, who made both free throws to make it a three-point game. Butler then missed a 3-pointer as time expired.

Derrick Rose scored a season-best 34 on a career-high 34 field-goal attempts for Chicago.

It was the 13th game in league history to go to at least four overtimes.

GAME HIGHLIGHTS: Kevin Durant had 22 points and eight rebounds, Enes Kanter had 19 points and 14 rebounds and the host Thunder beat the Lakers 118-78. Kobe Bryant, 37, sat with a sore right shoulder, and the Lakers started rookie Anthony Brown in his place. Lakers coach Byron Scott did not say when Bryant would return. … John Wall had 27 points and 12 assists, Garrett Temple scored a career-high 21 and the host Wizards beat the Hornets 109-101. … Carmelo Anthony scored 27 and the host Knicks beat the weary Bulls 107-91. The Bulls were coming off losing a four-overtime game to the Pistons in Chicago. Former Gator Joakim Noah had a season-high 21 for the Bulls in his first start of the season. Pau Gasol of the Bulls didn't even make the trip after playing 48 minutes Friday.

Thunder 118, Lakers 78

L.A. LAKERS (78): Brown 2-9 0-0 4, Nance Jr. 1-4 0-2 2, Hibbert 1-3 0-0 2, Clarkson 7-15 1-2 15, Williams 5-11 6-6 20, Russell 5-13 1-3 12, Young 5-13 1-1 14, Sacre 0-2 0-2 0, Randle 1-7 0-0 2, Bass 2-5 0-0 4, Huertas 1-4 1-1 3. Totals 30-86 10-17 78.

OKLAHOMA CITY (118): Durant 7-13 5-7 22, Ibaka 5-12 0-0 12, Adams 4-4 2-4 10, Westbrook 5-11 3-6 13, Roberson 2-4 0-0 4, Waiters 5-8 1-2 11, Collison 1-1 3-3 5, Augustin 1-3 0-0 3, Kanter 8-13 3-3 19, Morrow 4-9 0-0 10, Payne 3-4 0-0 6, Singler 0-0 0-0 0, Novak 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 46-84 17-25 118.

L.A. Lakers 15 26 14 23— 78

Okla. City 35 32 25 26— 118

3-Point GoalsL.A. Lakers 8-28 (Williams 4-6, Young 3-9, Russell 1-7, Randle 0-1, Clarkson 0-2, Brown 0-3), Oklahoma City 9-19 (Durant 3-4, Ibaka 2-2, Morrow 2-6, Augustin 1-2, Novak 1-2, Waiters 0-1, Westbrook 0-1, Roberson 0-1). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsL.A. Lakers 41 (Randle, Russell 7), Oklahoma City 68 (Kanter 14). AssistsL.A. Lakers 14 (Russell 5), Oklahoma City 28 (Westbrook 11). Total FoulsL.A. Lakers 20, Oklahoma City 14. TechnicalsL.A. Lakers defensive three second, Ibaka, Kanter, Oklahoma City defensive three second. A18,203 (18,203).

Wizards 109, Hornets 101

CHARLOTTE (101): Hairston 3-6 2-2 10, Williams 4-14 0-0 9, Zeller 5-9 1-2 11, Walker 6-18 5-5 18, Batum 5-12 3-4 14, Lin 6-13 1-1 15, Kaminsky 2-4 1-2 6, Hawes 4-8 0-0 9, Lamb 4-8 0-0 9, Hansbrough 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 39-93 13-16 101.

WASHINGTON (109): Oubre Jr. 3-5 0-0 8, Dudley 7-10 2-2 19, Gortat 7-16 4-4 18, Wall 10-21 5-6 27, Temple 7-9 5-7 21, Neal 1-7 2-2 4, Sessions 3-8 1-1 7, Humphries 2-3 1-1 5. Totals 40-79 20-23 109.

Charlotte 27 26 22 26— 101

Washington 28 31 27 23— 109

3-Point GoalsCharlotte 10-33 (Lin 2-2, Hairston 2-3, Hawes 1-2, Kaminsky 1-3, Lamb 1-4, Williams 1-5, Walker 1-7, Batum 1-7), Washington 9-20 (Dudley 3-5, Oubre Jr. 2-2, Temple 2-3, Wall 2-5, Sessions 0-1, Neal 0-4). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsCharlotte 58 (Williams 9), Washington 41 (Dudley 9). AssistsCharlotte 23 (Batum 8), Washington 26 (Wall 12). Total FoulsCharlotte 20, Washington 14. TechnicalsWall, Washington defensive three second. A16,987 (20,308).

Knicks 107, Bulls 91

CHICAGO (91): Gibson 3-4 0-0 6, Snell 3-6 0-0 7, Noah 9-16 3-4 21, Rose 3-10 0-1 6, Butler 4-11 3-4 12, Hinrich 0-2 0-0 0, Mirotic 1-8 0-0 2, McDermott 0-3 0-0 0, Portis 8-18 2-4 20, Brooks 3-8 4-4 11, Moore 2-5 0-0 4, Bairstow 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 37-94 12-17 91.

NEW YORK (107): Anthony 12-20 2-2 27, Porzingis 4-9 2-3 10, Lopez 3-5 2-2 8, Calderon 1-5 2-2 5, Afflalo 8-14 1-2 18, O'Quinn 2-4 0-0 4, Thomas 4-5 3-3 13, Galloway 3-7 1-1 7, Williams 2-6 5-7 9, Grant 2-7 2-2 6. Totals 41-82 20-24 107.

Chicago 18 21 29 23— 91

New York 25 24 28 30— 107

3-Point GoalsChicago 5-21 (Portis 2-3, Butler 1-2, Snell 1-2, Brooks 1-4, Hinrich 0-1, McDermott 0-2, Rose 0-2, Mirotic 0-5), New York 5-20 (Thomas 2-2, Afflalo 1-1, Anthony 1-4, Calderon 1-5, Williams 0-1, Galloway 0-2, Grant 0-2, Porzingis 0-3). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsChicago 58 (Portis 11), New York 49 (O'Quinn 10). AssistsChicago 17 (Butler 5), New York 19 (Calderon 5). Total FoulsChicago 20, New York 15. A19,812 (19,763).

George fined $35,000 for publicly criticizing officials 12/19/15 [Last modified: Saturday, December 19, 2015 10:42pm]
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