Nets coach Avery Johnson ejected

Updated: February 3, 2011, 1:29 AM ET
By Mike Mazzeo | Special to

NEWARK, N.J. -- New Jersey Nets head coach Avery Johnson snapped.

Clearly frustrated after a no-foul call on Philadelphia 76ers power forward Elton Brand, who appeared to hack Nets point guard Devin Harris as he drove into the lane during the third quarter of Wednesday night's 106-92 loss at the Prudential Center, Johnson lost his cool.

Following Jodie Meeks' layup at the other end, which gave the Sixers a 63-48 lead with 7:37 remaining in the third, an irate Johnson ripped into official Brent Barnaky right in front of the Nets' bench. He was accessed his first technical of the season, then received his second and an automatic ejection -- also his first of the season -- immediately after as he followed Barnaky onto the court.

"Well, in the first half I thought Devin made one or two drives and just didn't get rewarded for his effort," said Johnson. "The same thing happened in the third quarter and it was the same situation, same person and we just had a difference of opinion."

After Johnson was tossed, he headed off the court to chants of "Avery! Avery! Avery!" from the crowd of 10,057. He said he told Barnaky "Just maybe next time we'll get it right."

"We don't make excuses," Johnson said. "Our team, we just had a lackluster performance up until that point. But more than anything, sometimes you just have a difference of opinion with some people. I don't know if I've even gotten a technical this year. So obviously, if I got my first and second technical and my first ejection of the season, it must be with good reason."

Harris agreed with Johnson that Brand should've been called for a foul.

"I thought it was definitely a foul," said Harris, who tied for the team-high with 16 points and added a team-high seven assists. "That got Coach a little excited to get his first couple technicals."

Harris said he was surprised that it took Johnson -- known for his fiery nature when he was coaching Harris with the Dallas Mavericks -- this long (50 games) to get his first technical and ejection of the season.

"He got a lot more technicals in Dallas," Harris said. "I don't know if the rise in technicals was affecting him, but I'm glad to see him back."

This was Johnson's sixth career ejection as a head coach.

Assistant Sam Mitchell stepped in and coached the rest of the game for the Nets, who dropped to 15-35 overall.

Mike Mazzeo is a regular contributor to



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