Devin Booker somehow avoids fouling out despite clobbering Jrue Holiday

There’s a belief NBA referees are extremely reluctant to foul out star players, especially in big games.

Devin Booker‘s sixth foul uncalled contact late in Game 4 of the NBA Finals will only fuel the theory.

Seemingly forgetting he had five fouls, Booker smothered Jrue Holiday on a fastbreak late in the fourth quarter. Yet, officials didn’t whistle Booker.

“During live play, I saw a clean sweep of the ball and thought it was a no call,” referee James Capers said. “However, after seeing the replay, I now realize that I missed Booker’s right arm around the waist of Holiday, and it should have been a defensive foul on the play.”

At least Giannis Antetokounmpo immediately put back Holiday’s miss and the Bucks won. Otherwise, this would be an even bigger deal.

Though the missed call looked atrocious, officials weren’t necessarily letting Booker slide because he already had five fouls. Sometimes, bad calls just happen.

There were plenty in this game, especially in the fourth quarter.

P.J. Tucker got called for a foul despite making only permissible high-five contact on Jae Crowder (even worse than the call, Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer didn’t challenge the three-shot foul):

Antetokounmpo also threw an inbound pass with a foot inbounds:

More on the Suns

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