NBA Admits To Wrong Call In Mavs-Warriors
If you've read our All-Access coverage of the game, you already knew this might be coming. And you already know the Dallas Mavericks can take no solace in being right. There is no mulligan, no makeup, no reward. Heck, even the apology isn't a very clear one.
Rod Thorn, the NBA president of basketball pperations, issued the following statement today regarding a non-call during overtime of the Warriors' 122-120 win over the Mavericks at the AAC:
"Upon review at the league office, we have found that a shot taken by Dallas' Monta Ellis with 16.0 seconds remaining in overtime was on the way down when initially contacted and ruled a block by Golden State's Jermaine O'Neal, and should have been ruled a goaltend. The exact trajectory of the ball when touched was impossible to ascertain with the naked eye, and the play was not reviewable."
And we can leave it at that, I suppose, except to note ...
1) Other calls have gone Dallas' way. Over the course of that game. And this season. And the decades. So we will let go of this eventually.
2) "The exact trajectory of the ball when touched was impossible to ascertain with the naked eye'' is a unique way to issue a non-apologetic apology. It is the equivalent of saying to a baseball player, "I called you out because it was impossible to ascertain with the naked eye ... so I guessed.''
3) This explanation conflicts with the explanation provided to Dirk Nowitzki after the play. To wit:
"I think (Ellis') layup has a chance to get to the rim, and if that's the case, you can't just get it out of the air," said Nowitzki. "To me, that's a goaltend. I asked the referees what happened. The explanation was that the ball was two feet short. If that's the case, then he can get it out of the air, but where I was from, I think it had a chance to at least hit the rim. That's a goaltend to me."
And indeed, there is no doubt that the ball was heading toward the rim and nowhere close to falling "two feet short.'' ... and that fact is very possible to ascertain with the naked eye.
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