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Grizzlies-Spurs (Game 5): Incredible finish, but lots of ticky-tack fouls & potential missed goaltending

April 28th, 2011 2 comments

Last night the Spurs-Grizzlies game was a classic because of the Spurs’ Gary Neal‘s clock-beating 3-pointer that sent the game into overtime, among many reasons.

However, the game seemed to have a higher number of ticky-tack foul calls than normal, and had a potential goaltending call in overtime that could have affected the outcome. Check out the video below for evidence…

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.

Mavericks-Blazers (Game 3): Three flops (“allegedly”) from one player in same game, & questionable call fouls out Chandler

April 23rd, 2011 3 comments

Except for one game, Friday’s playoff action didn’t really have any wrong calls or missed calls that would have changed the outcome because they weren’t very close games (Celtics-Knicks, Lakers-Hornets). We’ll be providing a couple of clips shortly of some fouls from the Atlanta-Orlando game that were noteworthy in a very close game, though.

In the meantime, we wanted to feature some calls and flops from the Portland-Dallas game Thursday night. Both teams will be playing again on Saturday at 5pm ET.

Three of the clips involve J.J. Barea allegedly flopping (you be the judge), and one features a loose ball foul called on Tyson Chandler that was questionable at best. It fouled him out of the game with Dallas still having a chance to make a run, down only 10 points in the 4th quarter with plenty of time still left to play.

Knicks-Celtics (Game 1): Two bad calls at end of game doom Knicks

April 18th, 2011 18 comments

It was not a good ending for the Knicks against Boston in Game 1 of their series Sunday night. It wasn’t a great ending for referee Monty McCutchen (#13), either.

In the video below, you’ll see that McCutchen gets duped by Paul Pierce on one of the most effective flops we have seen in a late-game situation. From the first angle, you’ll see that it looks like Carmelo Anthony pushed off on a very important possession with the Knicks leading by only one point with 22 seconds remaining in the game.

But when you watch the second angle of the play, you’ll see that Anthony’s arm motion wasn’t all that strong, and Pierce sold it extremely well to draw the foul.

Then only a few seconds later in the game on the very next possession, you’ll see Kevin Garnett stick his foot out and basically trip Toney Douglas as he’s chasing after Ray Allen, who then drills a wide open 3-pointer to essentially win the game.

The rulebook calls it “screening,” and this is the part that applies:

A player who sets a screen shall not assume a position so near to a moving opponent that he is not given an opportunity to stop and/or change direction before making illegal contact.

The ref on both of these plays was McCutchen. Again, Pierce’s flop was so good, and McCutchen didn’t have the angle that the TNT cameras had that really showed just how much Pierce flopped.

But Anthony should have been more careful to not extend his arm to give Pierce the opportunity to try a flop. Anthony still shouldn’t have been called for the offensive foul, though.

At least McCutchen didn’t call a ticky-tack foul on Anthony as he was guarding Pierce at the beginning of the next possession as Pierce tried ANOTHER flop to draw a foul on Anthony. But there was no excuse for missing the trip by Garnett on Douglas.

Coming up on Monday will be our analysis of a couple of controversial calls in the Denver-Oklahoma City game last night.

Grizzlies vs. Spurs (Game 1): Not much controversial, but some good flops from Bonner

April 17th, 2011 No comments

We are working hard on reporting some of the worst and best ref calls from today’s (Sunday) playoff action. Here’s a report from the first game of the series: Game 1 of Grizzlies-Spurs.

There weren’t any controversial calls or no-calls that had a major impact on the outcome of this game. However, there were a couple of flops worth noting that our sister site TopFlops.com has reported.

On the first flop in the 2nd quarter, Bonner appeared to get hit in the face as he was shooting, then put his hand over his right eye as he crumpled to the floor in what looked like major pain.

But when Bonner got up, somehow magically he was fine, not even having to TOUCH his face after such a ‘painful’ blow. I think most people would have continued to at least touch their wound getting up after such trauma to the face. He probably did get touched in the face slightly for a legitimate foul, but c’mon Bonner, you have to sell it all the way after getting up until you shoot your free throws!

On the second play featured in the video, Bonner threw himself out of bounds after getting slightly touched, if at all, but referee Dan Crawford (#23) actually rewarded him with two free throwss.

This bad call didn’t hurt Memphis because they ultimately won thanks to a Shane Battier 3-pointer near the end of the game, but Bonner’s two free throws after this flop did make the game closer than it should have been.

Props go to analyst Kevin McHale who made fun of Bonner’s flop after the play.

More coverage from Sunday’s other playoff games is coming, so stay tuned.

No-call for Bulls seals home court advantage in the Finals

April 15th, 2011 No comments

On Wednesday night, the Bulls and the Nets played their final game of the regular season. If the Bulls win that game, their chances of getting home court advantage in the NBA Finals, if they get that far, go way up.

With 28 seconds remaining in the game, the Bulls were up 92-90, but the Nets had the ball with a chance to tie the game. New Jersey’s Brook Lopez drove to the basket for a dunk, but was fouled by Taj Gibson on the wrist, and no foul was called by any of the refs — Ken Mauer, Courtney Kirkland, and Kane Fitzgerald — all who had a good view of the play.

In this video we freeze-frame Lopez getting fouled by Gibson with no call.

Furthermore, we watch alot of games here at RefCalls.com, and it amazes us how clueless announcers are for most NBA teams. On this play, the Chicago announcers were so enamored with Kurt Thomas‘ block on Lopez, they completely ignored the foul that Gibson committed on Lopez right before Thomas blocked the shot. To top it off, the announcers then have the gall to criticize Lopez for not going strong to the rack. It looked like a very strong move to the hole to us!

Later in the same game there WAS a call the refs did make, but it wronged the Nets, as described by our sister site TopFlops.com

A few minutes earlier, referee Courtney Kirkland (#61) called Lopez for a personal foul with 5:22 remaining when Thomas clearly flopped playing defense on Lopez. Lopez did a slight hook of his arm on Thomas, and once he felt it… “Down goes Frazier!”

This was a huge call in favor of Chicago since they were TRAILING 84-81 at the time, and turned the ball over to the Bulls, who went on to overcome the deficit and win the game, thanks also to the no-call on Taj Gibson.

At least the Chicago announcers acknowledged that it was an Oscar-worthy flop by Thomas.

It turns out Chicago’s win and San Antonio’s loss gave the Bulls the best record in the league, assuring them of home court throughout the playoffs. But if San Antonio had won, forcing a tie and a drawing to see which would team would get home court advantage in the Finals (if they were to play each other), these blown calls would have been a lot more controversial (or should have been).