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Hornets-Lakers (Game 5): Physical game results in lots of calls, flops and questions about the officiating

April 27th, 2011 14 comments

Obviously the best game on Tuesday was the Hornets-Lakers game since that series was tied up 2-2 going into it, and the other games (Atlanta-Orlando and Chicago-Indiana) ended up being blowouts without any calls that had a bearing on the outcome.

L.A.-New Orleans was physical that had lots of contact, and thus more questionable calls than we’ve been seeing lately from playoff games. The one foul that struck us was the one that TNT analyst Reggie Miller said “could easily have been a flagrant” was when Kobe Bryant came down hard on Emeka Okafor‘s head, not going for the ball, and seemed to keep his arm wrapped around Okafor’s head excessively as his neck was forced backwards. That play is featured at the end of the video around the 3:30 mark. Bryant only received a regular personal foul.

Surprisingly, it appeared that none of Okafor’s fellow players saw it because you would normally expect a teammate to come to Okafor’s defense and retaliate by giving Bryant a shove or something.

The following video shows fouls and calls (against and for) both teams, giving you the opportunity to make your own decision on if the calls and no-calls were correct or not. Note: we didn’t include the elbow that Marco Bellinelli received in the face because it looked fairly accidental.

Monday’s games free of controversy, but here’s a couple of more questionable calls from Sunday

April 26th, 2011 4 comments

On Monday’s games, there weren’t really any game-changing calls that would have affected the outcome of any game, were controversial, or things we caught that others might have missed. One good thing about the playoffs is that the refs who are still officiating are the best of the lot.

That doesn’t mean there are occasional errors or blown calls/no-calls, though. Since we have some extra time, we thought we’d go back to the Lakers-Hornets game from Sunday night and highlight a couple of calls/no-calls that were significant.

Hornets-Lakers (Game 2): A big carry by Kobe undetected? Plus, 2 fouls on Kobe legit despite the whining

April 21st, 2011 38 comments

In Wednesday night’s Hornets-Lakers game, there weren’t any bad calls or no-calls down the stretch that would have changed the outcome of the game.

However, we were struck by one no-call of traveling against Kobe Bryant that looked like a violation to us, and 3 other rulings against him that were correct by ref Tony Brothers (#25).

We hate to say it, but two of the clips in the video below reveal how much of a complainer Kobe is when it’s obvious he is wrong, and when he knows he’s wrong. It’s nothing new, but always good to see video proof in slow motion.

On Thursday, we’ll be posting some video of calls/no-calls from the Grizzlies-Spurs game that was played Wednesday night. So stay tuned.

Hornets vs. Lakers (Game 1): Good call by ref deserves credit on a tough play during big possession

April 18th, 2011 4 comments

In New Orleans’ 109-100 victory over the Lakers on Sunday, there was really only one controversial call late in the game worth mentioning, and it was the correct call.

When we first saw the play, we thought the ref call was wrong because we were focusing on the contact that Chris Paul was applying on Derek Fisher‘s back, which is the most obvious contact in the play. On the replay from the floor camera angle, you’ll see Fisher has his leg extended in front of Paul while Paul is standing still, which is legal.

Analyst Jeff Van Gundy asks if Fisher was in a “legal guarding position,” which he was. But Van Gundy goes on to say Fisher “didn’t move.” However, if you slow down the replay enough times (which we have done for you in the video), you will see that Fisher moved his left knee upwards, almost into Paul’s groin, along with his left heel rising off the floor, revealing that his thigh is moving slyly upwards. This explains why referee Greg Willard (#53) called a block on Fisher.

Paul was pretty smart on this play because he saw how Fisher was positioned with his leg in his path, and decided to drive through Fisher’s leg. Paul might have been called for a charge if Fisher hadn’t raised his leg upwards, which Willard caught. Paul also sold the contact well by contorting his body and letting go of the ball like he had been jolted harder than he really was.