The NBA has issued a statement regarding the foul Dwight Howard fouling out with 10.8 seconds to play in overtime …
Rod Thorn, NBA President, Basketball Operations, issued the following statement today regarding a play late in the fourth quarter of the Portland Trail Blazers’ 122-120 win over the Houston Rockets on April 20, at Toyota Center:
“After video review by the league office, we have determined that the officials were incorrect in assessing a foul to the Rockets’ Dwight Howard with 10.8 seconds remaining in overtime. The foul should have been called on the Blazers’ Joel Freeland and Howard should have been awarded two free throws.”
Here’s video of the play in question. Freeland made one of two free throws to put the Trail Blazers up 122-120.
To me, it seems like it should have been a no-call rather than a foul on either player, but the larger issue is that there were so many disputable calls or no-calls against both teams (the no-call of Howard elbowing Robin Lopez in the stomach being the first that comes to mind) that picking out that one play for review seems like an odd move by the NBA.
Either way, the Trail Blazers still lead the series 1-0 going into Game 2 on Wednesday. It’ll be interesting to see if this statement by the league or the contentious nature of Game 1 will have any effect on the way Game 2 is officiated.