Posts Tagged ‘michael smith’

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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