NBL Rd 5 - Melbourne v Sydney
NBL Rd 5 - Melbourne v Sydney

Gaze backs Kings coach’s massive meltdown

ANDREW Gaze has leapt to the defence of Sydney coach Will Weaver following his extraordinary blow-up during the Kings' NBL loss to Melbourne.

Weaver had to be restrained by players and coaching staff after being sensationally ejected before halftime of the Kings' fiery 107-104 loss on Monday night.

The American-born Weaver lost his temper when referees failed to call what he believed was a clear push against the back of his star forward Jae'Sean Tate.

He now faces a possible fine after being referred to the NBL's match review panel, but Gaze said the coach's actions did not warrant further action.

"There's no doubt that in that last play, when Tate went to set the screen, Dillon Stith pushed him, it was a missed call," Gaze said. "He had every right to be upset.

"He was upset and expressed himself. There's not a coach in the world that hasn't done that, so I don't think we should be hanging him for that, it's just part of the game."

Gaze emphasised that he had not heard audio of the exact conversation between Weaver and the referees that led to the second technical foul.

Weaver faces further punishment.
Weaver faces further punishment.

"If he used profanities, or if there's something that I'm not aware of, that places it in a different light," said Gaze, who Weaver replaced as Kings coach this season.

"But when you've got a valid complaint, and you're trying to express it, and you don't use any profanity, but you demonstrate emotion, you generally get a bit of leeway.

"I guess because he never got that leeway, it triggered a bit of a reaction."

Gaze did not believe Weaver's blow up caused the Kings to lose their first game of the season and even suggested his ejection could have a positive effect on the side.

"It's one that in the big scheme of things, it's not a massive issue, it can be a real positive to the group and help grow that bond with the players," he said.

"Your coach has your back, if things on the floor aren't going your way, he's going to fight the fight for you."

Weaver's outburst wasn't the first time a Kings coach has been ejected from Melbourne Arena.

Referees evicted former coach Brian Goorjian from the stadium during the 2005/2006 NBL season, as Melbourne went on to break the Kings' 15-game winning streak.