NBA looking at Richardson incident at game's end

Updated: May 3, 2007, 5:47 AM ET
ESPN.com news services

DALLAS -- Stephen Jackson's reputation might have been a factor in his two ejections this postseason. It won't get him suspended from Game 6 of the Golden State Warriors' first-round series against the Dallas Mavericks.

NBA spokesman Tim Frank said Wednesday that the league will take no action against Jackson for what happened in the closing moments of Game 5, when he was tossed with 8.9 seconds left in a 118-112 loss, or for his mounting ejections.

The league is, however, looking into an apparent incident involving Golden State's Jason Richardson and a fan late in the fourth quarter.

NBA observers in the building interviewed multiple spectators after the game about an alleged tangle between Richardson and a Mavericks fan sitting across from the Dallas bench. Richardson fell after a shot and tempers appeared to flare when the Warriors' swingman felt he was being impeded as he tried to get up to rejoin the game. Because the Mavs fan filed a report with NBA security, league officials are expected to review the incident.

"I didn't say nothing to nobody," Richardson said, according to The Associated Press.

"If I wanted to blow up, I could've blew up then. Why blow up when there's 8 seconds left when the game is over? It doesn't make no sense. Do I have 'moron' written on my forehead when I walk out on the court or something? I don't. ... I'm smarter than a lot of people think. I'm going to continue to play basketball and do what I do."
-- Stephen Jackson

Warriors coach Don Nelson announced immediately after the game that Jackson would be fined "a substantial amount" for his incident. The league fined Jackson $50,000 for the series of outbursts that led to his Game 2 ejection and continued as he left the court.

The circumstances around the first ejection may have been a factor in the league's decision: All Jackson did was clap after a teammate was called for an obvious foul.

"I wasn't trying to show nobody up," he said Wednesday, adding that he was already consoling teammates and telling them to look ahead to the next game. "It didn't make no sense to me."

Another oddity is that this ejection came after only one technical foul. A second technical is an automatic ejection; one-tech ejections usually come for egregious acts.

"First time for everything," Jackson said.

Jackson said he didn't bother asking for an explanation.

"Everybody can look at what happened and you can come up with your own [reasons]," he said.

The most likely answer is that officials are giving Jackson little margin of error because of past problems, most notably his role in the Pacers-Pistons brawl several years ago.

However, it's worth noting that Jackson got two personal fouls in the first 71 seconds of the game Tuesday, but played another 40:01 without getting another.

"If I wanted to blow up, I could've blew up then. Why blow up when there's 8 seconds left when the game is over? It doesn't make no sense," he said. "Do I have 'moron' written on my forehead when I walk out on the court or something? I don't. ... I'm smarter than a lot of people think. I'm going to continue to play basketball and do what I do."

The series continues Thursday night in Oakland. Eighth-seeded Golden State leads top-seeded Dallas 3-2, largely because of how well Jackson has contained Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki.

Nowitzki broke out for the first time all series at the end of Game 5, scoring 12 points in a 15-0 rally over the final few minutes.

ESPN.com senior writer Marc Stein and The Associated Press contributed to this report.