NBA bad-boy DeMarcus Cousins lost the plot after being slapped with a technical foul for throwing an opponent’s shoe into the crowd.
The Golden State Warriors big-man, 28, was livid after the ref punished for trying to keep players safe during the 121-110 win over the Charlotte Hornets.
Cousins claimed he was trying to avoid anyone getting injured by slipping on a shoe that had slipped off Jeremy Lamb’s foot.
The former Sacramento Kings star has only just returned to the court after nearly a year on the sidelines for tearing his Achilles.
And Cousins didn’t hold back in his criticism of the official, sarcastically saying: “Next time I’ll just step on the shoe and roll my ankle, break it, tear an Achilles.
“Just leave it out there next time. I guess that’s what they want. I’ll keep that in mind.”
Cousins’ famously hot-headed team-mate Draymond Green had his say on the bizarre incident – calling the whole sequence “crazy”.
Green added: “I don’t know if I’ve ever seen that. But that’s crazy.
“It’s sitting in the middle of the floor. I don’t know. We have all these rules for player safety.
“You can barely contest a shot without getting a foul, but you’re supposed to leave a shoe sitting there?
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“It’s just kind of crazy to me, but it is what it is.
“I thought Brian Forte reffed a great game tonight, so that’s one call that’s a little questionable.”
Meanwhile, All-Star Stephen Curry added his thoughts, saying: “He’s got to be a little bit more delicate throwing it to the sideline – like horseshoes.
“Just got to touch the line and sit down, not throw it in the stands. He’s too strong, that’s all. Too strong.”
In other shoe-related basketball news, Nike have opened an investigation after future No1 NBA draft pick Zion Williamson injured his knee after his foot burst through his shoe.