Posts Tagged ‘danny crawford’

Goaltending should have been called, but changes nothing

By Jeff Caplan, NBA.com

HANG TIME SOUTHWEST – Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is all for transparency when it comes to NBA officiating. However, the league’s admission Wednesday that the referees should have called goaltending late in overtime of Dallas’ 122-120 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night won’t make him feel any better.

Cuban was furious over the no-call that saw Warriors center Jermaine O’Neal block Mavs guard Monta Ellis‘ baseline floater with 16 seconds left in overtime and with the score tied 120-120. O’Neal passed to Draymond Green, who quickly got it to Stephen Curry, who made the game-winning shot with 0.1 seconds left on the clock. Cuban leaped out of his baseline chair and continued to voice his disagreement to the officiating crew of Danny CrawfordSean Corbin and Eric Dalen from behind the scorers table after the game.


VIDEO: O’Neal’s block leads to Curry’s game-winner

After a review of the play by the league office, Rod Thorn, NBA president of basketball operations, issued the following statement:

“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.”

Playoff implications were high. Golden State entered as the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference and Dallas as the No. 7 seed. Had Dallas won it would have moved just one-half game behind the Warriors. The loss instead dropped them to ninth place and out of the playoff picture, at least temporarily. Had the Warriors lost, their already slim margin for error to maintain playoff position would have shrunk with a tough matchup ahead tonight at West-leading San Antonio.

Dallas led 106-102 with 1:43 to go in regulation and 108-105 with 1:16 to go, but it couldn’t close it out, a central theme in the Mavs’ disappointing 4-4 homestand that concluded with the loss to Golden State. They also led 117-113 with 2:32 to go in overtime, but were then outscored 5-0 in relinquishing the lead. Tied 120-120, Ellis tried to beat his defender Klay Thompson to the right, but Thompson stayed in front of him and forced Ellis to take a fallaway near the baseline. O’Neal, who was dunked on by Ellis late in the fourth quarter, went up and snatched the ball out of mid-air.

The Mavs raised their arms in unison, stunned that no goaltending call had been made.

“I think his [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,” Nowitzki said. “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.”

O’Neal disagreed as he described the play in the  Warriors’ locker room.

“It was like a second away from goaltending, if you’re too late, and I was on top of it,” O’Neal said. “I blocked it, grabbed it and outlet it. There’s no way they could have called that. When your hand is on top of the ball, that’s a good block. I caught it like this (showing his hand on top of the ball), I didn’t bat it, I caught it like this, so there’s no way they could have called it goaltending.”

Turns out O’Neal was wrong and Cuban was right. It doesn’t matter. The league’s admission does nothing to change the outcome of the game.

Birdman Should Sit For Manhandling Ref

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When the Eastern Conference finals shifts back to Indianapolis for Game 6 Saturday night, Miami’s Chris “Birdman” Andersen needs to spectate from his hotel room or his aviary or whatever other perch he can find outside Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Because the NBA needs to deliver a one-game suspension for Andersen’s actions in a second-quarter skirmish.

Not just for what Andersen did to Pacers reserve forward Tyler Hansbrough, either. For his tussle with referee Marc Davis.

By now, the sequence of events involving Andersen and Hansbrough is widely known: Miami’s tightly wound big man, while trying to rebound, got nudged from behind by Indiana’s Paul George. Only he didn’t get George’s license plate — he apparently thought Hansbrough had delivered the bump. So as the two ran upcourt behind the play, he bumped “back” at Hansbrough, the collision sending the Indiana player sprawling.

Hansbrough, startled at first, took exception and Andersen was all too willing to continue what he had started. The two closed the distance between them and bumped chests, at which point Andersen sharply shoved Hansbrough back with two hands.

OK, that should have been enough to eject Andersen right there. The only difference between what Andersen did on the shove and what Chicago’s Nazr Mohammed did in shoving LeBron James in Game 3 of the semifinals was that James went sprawling, sliding several feet in what Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau referred to as a “flop.”

Hansbrough’s mistake, even as the NBA seems ripe to wring out flopping, looks to be not (ahem) selling the play to refs Danny Crawford, Jim Capers and Davis. He couldn’t even had he tried, because teammate Roy Hibbert was there to catch him.

So Andersen delivers two blows — both of which sure looked to be “unnecessary” and “excessive” — and yet, upon review, gets slapped only with a flagrant-1 foul. But the skirmish wasn’t over.

One of the referees, Davis, gets in front of Andersen and moves him backward away from Hansbrough to stop a possible escalation of the beef. What does Andersen do? He pushes back. He grabs Davis’ wrist with his right hand. He pushes on the referee’s arm with his left. All of this physical contact with a game official because he’s steamed, because he didn’t like getting bumped from behind or because, in some misguided way, he’s trying to ignite (incite?) his Heat teammates and/or the crowd at AmericanAirlines Arena.

That was the most disturbing thing about the incident. Andersen did enough to be ejected then — or, a little late, suspended now for one game — with his hits on Hansbrough. But he crossed the line by getting physical with Davis.

No way should any NBA referee be subject to that sort of wrestling or manhandling, lest people assume they’re just part of the act in Andersen’s dumb WWE display.

One Play Can’t Cost You A Game …





HANG TIME PLAYOFF HEADQUARTERS – How many times have you heard someone say it, “that one play didn’t cost us the game?”

Don’t care to count?

No?

We understand.

Technically speaking, one play might not cost you the game. But one crucial play at the right time in a tight game can certainly have a more significant impact on the outcome of said game. And that was indeed the case in Boston last night for Celtics’ forward Kevin Garnett. He was called for an offensive foul on a moving screen on Andre Iguodala as he tried to make space for Paul Pierce with 10 seconds to play in a game the Philadelphia 76ers led 78-75.

The call, made by Michael Smith after Garnett had already been warned by Danny Crawford to watch the moving screens, helped seal the deal for the Sixers.

“I just thought in that situation you let the players decide the game,” Garnett said after his illegal pick took the air out of the building and a spirited, fourth quarter rally from the home team. “But if he felt like that was an illegal pick, then that’s what it is.”

It was glaring (check the video above). But not necessarily a call anyone expected in that situation. To his credit, Garnett tried his best not to make a huge fuss about it afterwards, choosing instead the common refrain that it was one of many mistakes made that led to the final outcome.

“Danny had already given me a warning about how I was setting the picks,” Garnett said. “I’m going to continue to set picks. I’m going to continue to get guys open. That wasn’t, to me, the game. We did things going up to that point in determining the game.”

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Ignoring, neglecting refs a good thing

CHICAGO – Danny Crawford, Michael Smith and Ken Mauer. Or if you prefer, Mauer, Smith and Crawford.

Here at the Hang Time hideout, we figure the names of referees who worked Game 1 of the Miami Heat-Chicago Bulls series at United Center are worth repeating once, twice or even thrice. They’ve got a few mentions coming because of how seldom their names came up during the game and broadcasts Sunday night.

Too often, hotly contested playoff games – especially at the level of conference championships and beyond – thrust the officials front and center in ways that the league and NBA fans generally abhor. But it happens, again and again, year after year:

Who’s working the game? Which team does he favor? How did three guys miss that call? Does he and that superstar have some sort of history? And on and on.

Considering the partisanship of most interested observers, the split-second decisions required several hundred times each game and the pseudo-celebrity status of NBA game officials thrust front-and-center into the spotlight right next to the players, the focus on refs – to the point of obsession – is understandable.

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