Post by Jon Pastuszek
March 12, 2012
Beijing – 100 @ Shanxi – 102
An intense and hard fought Game 4 was won in Taiyuan by Shanxi, setting up a do-or-die Game 5 on Wednesday night in Beijing — the first time in CBA history that a semi-finals series has ever gone the distance.
However, Shanxi’s big win and the exciting development that it set up was marred by the behavior of their fans, both during and after the game. In the fourth quarter, Stephon Marbury drove hard to hoop against Shanxi’s guard/forward, Makan. On Marbury’s extension and follow through on the layup, his elbow hit his defender’s face, opening up a cut over his eyebrow. Makan, however, was called for the foul. Angered, Makan and his teammates started to yell at the referee, who promptly whistled a technical foul. With Makan bleeding, both the Brave Dragons and their fans went into a frenzy as Marbury stepped up and hit three of four free-throws.
With tensions running high and the game close late in the fourth, Marcus Williams drove hard left to the hole with 43 seconds left with the score 100-97 in favor of Beijing. Marbury swiped and missed at the ball before Randolph Morris came over for both the block and — William’s head — after the big center crashed over Williams under the basket. There was no foul called, and to show their thoughts on the matter, spectators starting throwing lighters, water bottles and other objects onto the court. Both benches cleared with several scuffles ensuing. By the time the dust had settled and the court cleaned up, no technicals had been called and the game resumed.
When it did, Charles Gaines stepped up with a huge and-one lay-up. After converting the free-throw to tie the game at 100, Marbury came down and missed a three with 26 seconds. Williams milked the clock and drove hard to the basket, where he was fouled. He converted the free-throws to make it 102-100. Beijing called time-out and Lee Hsueh-lin got a look at three, which came up short.
But apparently not satisfied by their bottle-tossing, Shanxi fans blocked Beijing’s bus from leaving the arena while hurling yet more objects at the vehicle. Beijing was eventually able to leave, but not without Brave Dragon fans leaving a black mark on their already notorious reputation within the CBA.
For Shanxi, Gaines lead the way with 39 points and 16 rebounds, Williams finished with 34 points, 10 rebounds and four assists and Lu Xiaoming had seven points and nine assists. Morris was huge in the second half, particularly the fourth quarter when Beijing practically went in to him on every possession to finish with 36 points and 13 rebounds. Marbury had 25.