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Technical analysis: Breakdown of Perkins’ playoff T’s

Celtics [1] center Kendrick Perkins [2] has never been one to hold back emotions on the basketball court. His reactions to opposing players or calls by officials have often resulted in him receiving technical fouls. During the regular season, those technicals haven’€™t hurt Boston more than one point. In the playoffs, however, those technicals are threatening to force Perkins to sit out a game.

After the ‘€œBrawl at the Palace’€ between the Pistons and Pacers at Detroit in 2004, the NBA implemented a rule that limited the amount of technical fouls a player could receive in the playoffs before being suspended. The rule states that any player will receive a one-game suspension following a seventh technical and every other technical thereafter.

Entering the NBA finals [3], Perkins already has six technicals on his tab and could be going on his eighth if not for the league rescinding one in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals. He’€™s picked up at least one technical in each of the three series the Celtics have played in this postseason.

Here are the six technical fouls Perkins has received in the playoffs:

1.  Game 5 vs. Miami

Perkins’€™ first technical came when he locked arms with Udonis Haslem [4] in Game 5 against the Heat. Official Derrick Stafford blew the whistle with six minutes, 10 seconds remaining in the second quarter as Perkins and Haslem became tangled after a Dwayne Wade missed shot. Though it seemed as if Perkins was only trying to get free and into the offense, Stafford felt he was a little too wild with his elbow. (Skip to 6:40 mark)

2. Game 2 vs. Cleveland

The second technical Perkins received came on a double technical, which has been a trend in these playoffs. Up by 15 points with 4:57 remaining in the third quarter, Perkins and Anderson Varejao each earned technicals after nudging each other with elbows on a dead ball. Official Dick Bavetta quickly separated the two players after a little jawing, but other than a few bumps, there was nothing physical about the exchange. (Skip to 1:32 mark)

3. Game 5 vs. Cleveland

In a heated series against the Cavaliers [5], both Boston and Cleveland did a lot of trash talking. That was the case with 7:10 remaining in the second quarter of Game 5 when Perkins and Antawn Jamison [6] were given technicals by official Greg Willard for exchanging words after the whistle. Perkins was upset about the previous play when he caught an elbow in the throat from Shaquille O’€™Neal. Jamison, meanwhile, stepped in front of O’€™Neal, who seemed to be doing all the talking on the Cavaliers end, and didn’€™t do much to warrant a technical.

4. Game 6 vs. Cleveland

Perkins’€™ third technical of the Cleveland series and fourth overall in the playoffs came in the Game 6 clincher when he and O’€™Neal had some pushing and shoving after Perkins was called for a foul on the entry pass. Officials Monty McCutchen and Bob Delaney whistled the technicals and broke up the two players with 6:56 remaining in the third quarter. This was just one of many confrontations between Perkins and Cleveland’€™s big men in the series. (Skip to 3:59 mark)

5. Game 3 vs. Orlando

In Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals, Perkins and Dwight Howard [7] were called for double technicals after some back-and-forth jawing. With just 1:24 remaining in the first quarter, Willard blew the whistle and didn’€™t allow for the situation or escalate. Though you can’€™t see on the video what really transpired, there was no physical altercation, just trash talking. (Skip to 10:00 mark)

6. Game 5 vs. Orlando

The most controversial technicals Perkins received came in Game 5 in Orlando. He received not one, but two technicals from official Ed F. Rush in a span of less than two minutes. With 2:15 remaining in the first half, Perkins attempted to help up Paul Pierce [8] off the ground. When his hand slipped, Perkins’€™ elbow hit Marcin Gortat, who was directly behind him. Gortat then retaliated by punching the ball out of Perkins’€™ arms, which resulted in a double technical call.

Then, with 38 seconds left in the half, Perkins was called for a foul as he tried to poke the ball away from Howard. Perkins reacted by turning away from Rush and walking away angrily, which is what players are told to do so as to not pick up a technical. Nevertheless, Rush called a second technical on Perkins, causing him to be ejected from the game. Perkins would have been unable to play in Game 6 had the league not rescinded the seventh technical. (Skip to 1:20 mark)