Indiana Pacers swingman Lance Stephenson has long been a player who is considered to be a bit of a problem child, and now, he may have a real problem with availability during the 2014 NBA Playoffs. Stephenson, who is a vital member of the top-seeded Pacers, has already accumulated three technical fouls during Indiana’s first-round series with the Atlanta Hawks, and if he gets to seven, he’ll be automatically suspended for the following game.
In that vein, Stephenson has reportedly (via Pacers.com) asked for the technical to be rescinded, and it could be an incredibly interesting ruling from the league. Here is the video from the play in question:
As you can see, the technical was certainly not of the “blatant” variety, but given that it was given from Tony Brothers, it didn’t need to be. Stephenson has earned the reputation as someone who jaws with officials (in addition to the other team), and as any seasoned NBA fan knows, reputation matters in a significant way with referees.
Indiana has visions of competing for the 2014 title despite their lackluster opening round showing, but without Stephenson in a potentially pivotal game down the line, that could be sidetracked in a big way.