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Refs make Krstic feel like a rookie again

Posted by Julian Benbow, Globe Staff  March 30, 2011 05:56 PM

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Nenad Krstic's feeling like the Charlie Browniest center in the league these days and one play in Monday's loss to Indiana pretty much sums up how things have been going for him lately. He set a pick for Delonte West then slipped into the paint. West bounced a pass his way, but he never got a chance to bring it in because AJ Price jumped on his back. It was the kind of play that would have blown Tommy Heinsohn's brain to bits, but as you can see in MrTripleDouble's video, Mike Gorman and Donny Marshall are both pretty calm in pointing out that it was not only a foul, but also that even Price was laughing at the play.

So Krstic runs down the floor, shaking his head, stunned, Doc Rivers is on the bench in disbelief, and Price goes to the line. Trying to grab the rebound on Price's missed free throw, Krstic gets called for grabbing Jeff Foster. It was clearly a foul, but at that point Krstic's puzzled, trying to figure out why he can't get a call at one end but he can get rung up for his fifth foul at the other.

"I don’t know if it’s a foul or not, but definitely on the other end, he jumped on my back," Krstic said. "I couldn’t catch the ball because he was on my back."

He's trying not to let it affect him, but he admits that it does:

“I’m back in my rookie year,” Krstic said. “When I was a rookie I didn’t get many calls. So I feel like the same thing right now. I don’t know, maybe it’s because I’m playing with great players. I don’t know. I really don’t have an explanation.

"Those couple minutes, you’re frustrated, but then you try to forget about it. It affects you, especially this situation for me when Coach is stressing for me to do everything right and just to relax and play, then you don’t get calls. It’s tough.

"You can’t control it. You can’t get frustrated, but those things I can get a technical called for arguing with the referees. It’s tough."

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