Everyone saw it happen except the three guys in the striped shirts, and now the NBA has admitted that its referees blew a crucial kick ball no-call that helped decide a Friday night game between the Indiana Pacers and the Golden State Warriors.
With less than 10 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter of a tied game, Warriors guard Monta Ellis attempted a cross over move on Pacers guard George Hill outside the 3-point arc. Ellis' right-to-left dribble move resulted in the ball bouncing off Hill's right foot, which was raised off the ground. The ball ricocheted into Hill's arms and he took off the other direction, finishing a lay-up while being fouled by Warriors guard Stephen Curry, who tried in vain to foul him to prevent the lay-up. Hill made his free throw, Curry missed a potential game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer and the Pacers escaped with a 94-91 road victory at Oracle Arena.
The NBA announced on Saturday that the refereeing crew of Mike Callahan, Courtney Kirkland and Tony Brown should have whistled Hill for a kick ball violation, which would have returned possession to the Warriors with the score tied and roughly five seconds remaining on the clock.
Here's the league's official explanation.
With 5.4 seconds remaining in the Indiana-Golden State game on Jan. 20, Pacers guard George Hill intentionally kicked the ball away from Warriors guard Monta Ellis during his cross over dribble. According to rule no. 10, Section IV.b, kicking the ball or striking it with any part of the leg is a violation when it is an intentional act. The officials missed the kicked ball violation which should have resulted in a deadball situation and Golden State inbounding the ball on the sideline nearest the spot of the violation.Warriors coach Mark Jackson and his team were furious, and he vigorously argued the call with officials after the ensuing play.
With the win, the Pacers improved to 10-4. The Warriors fell to 5-10.
The NBA also recently admitted that their referees blew a late no-call on a traveling violation by Miami Heat All-Star forward LeBron James.
Here's vide of the obvious blown call via YouTube user NBA.
Hat tip: IAmAGM.com