Bizarre scenes as rival coach shoves Andrew Bogut

Perth Wildcats coach Trevor Gleeson has shoved Andrew Bogut out of an impromptu huddle late in the Sydney Kings’ win.

The improving Kings underlined their right to be considered among the NBL’s genuine contenders with a hard-fought 77-72 home win over ladder leaders Perth on Thursday night.

But the tight contest was overshadowed by a bizarre push and shove with 22 seconds left in the game.

Frustrated by Gleeson getting his Wildcats together without calling a timeout, Bogut jogged over and joined their discussion.

The 2015 NBA champion was well within his rights to do so but his presence angered Gleeson, who pushed him away.

Andrew Bogut clashed with Trevor Gleeson late in the game. Pic: Getty/NBL

The referees called play on and the game finished without further incident.

“We were just having a chat about the 2016 Olympics when he was an assistant coach,” Bogut joked after the game.

“(I was) just trying to see that they were going to run out of their huddle. It’s not a timeout so I can run anywhere on the court if I want to.”

Opinions were divided over the referees’ non-call, with some praise for letting the game finish and some criticism that Gleeson was not punished.

The Kings led by 15 in the second quarter and by 13 early in the final quarter at Qudos Bank Arena.

But Perth, who suffered just their second loss in 12 games, showed all of their renowned resilience to get within one point inside the last five minutes of the match.

Brad Newley and Kevin Lisch each scored 16 for Sydney, while Nick Kay and Terrico White each tallied 17 for Perth; Clint Steindl contributed 16 off the bench.

Perth were again without their league leading scorer Bryce Cotton, but had inspirational skipper Damian Martin back from a calf injury and the tenacious defender helped limit Jerome Randle to a season-low eight points.

A 10-0 run in the second quarter sparked by six straight points from Newley broke open a previously close game and helped push Sydney to a 43-33 half-time lead.

Perth didn’t get their first free throw till almost halfway through the second quarter, by which time Sydney had nailed 12 of 14 attempts from the charity stripe.

A nip and tuck first quarter produced seven lead changes, with Andrew Bogut scoring six of Sydney’s first ten points.

The Wildcats starters combined for just 17 first half points, only one more than their bench mustered through the first two quarters.

Sydney led by as much as 15 in the third quarter, but Perth slashed the deficit to six as the Kings missed five straight field goal attempts before the home team steadied to hold a nine-point buffer going into the final term.