The officiating crew working Tuesday night's game between the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs made a crucial error that may have impacted the final result, and the Rockets believe the National Basketball Association is going to take some sort of action to remedy the situation.
The Houston Rockets are hoping the National Basketball Association decides to replay the end of their match against the San Antonio Spurs after referees mistakenly did not count a dunk by James Harden.
James Harden has been on fire for the Houston Rockets, and has put up unprecedented numbers so far this season.
The ball caught on the net on Harden's way down, popping back up towards the rim and off the backboard.
He then burst into a sprint and slammed down a dunk through the net, but as he did, the ball flicked back up through the net. The refs mistakenly ruled that Harden missed the dunk, and the Spurs finished the game on a 26-13 run to force overtime. The Rockets star then pleaded to referees that the ball went through the net.
If the Rockets do request such action, the National Basketball Association could decide the result stands because Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni failed to seek a review of the play within the 30-second window. Not only that, Paul's ability to shoot from downtown would be a great remedy for the double teams James Harden is seeing, as The Point God is too big of a shooting threat to be left open. D'Antoni said after the game he was initially told that the ball hit Harden and went through the rim, making it offensive goaltending, and that he sought to challenge that. "So I challenged that". I'm just happy to have played team ball and got this win.
"Another guy said it wasn't goaltending, it went out of bounds on us". D'Antoni said the Rockets lost focus even before the Rockets were not awarded points for the Harden dunk.
A protest is a full challenge process that the league would go through, but it's hard to picture the Rockets winning it. "I've got nothing. I can't tell you". But at the same time, there's a lot that went right throughout the game that San Antonio can focus on going forward to spur a mid-season turn around.
On Tuesday, Harden poured in 50 points, making all 24 of his free throws, in the loss. He also had nine rebounds, six assists and four steals.
The Rockets led by 22 in the second half and were up by double digits in the fourth quarter for all but the final 4:18.
While it seemed an obvious call for many, some fans still couldn't help but make a few jokes at the former MVP's expense. Bryn Forbes scored 25 points in the win. The second came against DeRozan with 0.8 seconds remaining, sealing San Antonio's victory.
Officials crew chief James Capers admitted that the dunk should have counted. "When that happens, that is basket interference".