Scandal! The referees don't see a Harden mate and the Rockets ask for victory

Madness game in Texas with comeback and victory of the Spurs in the second extension. Espepento in the shot of Harden (50 points) and the Rockets.


There are few precedents, if not any, of the real madness that was experienced last morning at the AT&T Center in San Antonio. The Spurs traced a game they had lost and took a victory in extremis in a clash that the Rockets managed from beginning to end but that escaped them because of those eternal mistakes they have been showing since Mike D'Antoni He sat on the Texan bench and gave the reins of a personalist system to James Harden, who today monopolizes almost the entire game of his team.

And it's not that Harden is bad. Quite the opposite. He is an extraordinary player, one of the best in history in his position and a true star of the League that has been MVP of the season and is getting scoring deeds that in the history of the NBA have only achieved Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan or Wilt Chamberlain But that does not mean that the abuse that makes the Triple Beard is a problem when the shots do not enter. A traditional mistake both in the escort and in the Rockets, which continue to exploit outside launches despite the continuous mistakes. All this favored by the inesxitencia of that plan b that D'Antoni (a very good coach) has never had and that has caused Houston to be aspiring (and even favorite) to the ring year after year but that, year after year, clashes in the final phase, where the decisions are penalized more. And they remember those 27 triples failed consecutively in the seventh game of the Western finals against the Warriors in the Toyota Center. A match that was worth a Finals.

The night in the shooting of the stars of Houston was horrific: Harden finished with 11 of 38 in field shots (28%) and an ignominious 4 of 20 in triples, figures that unfortunately are not isolated and we have already seen in others matches. The escort scored 50 points thanks again to the free throws (24 without fail, NBA record beating Diminique Wilkins) and becomes the third player in history after Chamberlain and Kobe to get a 50-point game after another of 60. However, the number of shots attempted and failed stamped their own, especially in extra time. The Rockets were at the rhythm of their leader and had Westrbook with triple-double (19 + 10 + 10) but with 7 of 30 in shots, while as a team they scored 15 triples ... in 51 attempts.

Harden not only monopolized the attack of his team, but also the most controversial play of the duel and that has been a real scandal in the League. The escort stole the ball when there were just under 8 minutes left at the end of the regular time and made a mate. The force with which he crushed the ring caused the net to remain above, momentarily giving the sensation that the ball had not entered and even running the player himself for the rebound. After realizing it, he asked for the basket with the coach, but it was not granted. An arbitration error that was not reviewed and that has caused the Rockets to ask for victory or the end to be repeated, something that would set a precedent in the history of the League. It has never happened.

There are several shots of the play, but in all of them you can see that the ball enters, although it is difficult to see live. However, it does not seem possible that he will be granted the victory to Houston, who could have insisted more on the review or hurried to ask for it, something they could not do seeing the drift that led the party (at that time they won from 13). The NBA has made a statement acknowledging the delay and warning of the time it takes for the Rockets to request the review, but at no time has the possibility of granting them victory or any other alternative compensation been considered. Remember that the North American competition usually recognizes these failures publicly, but nothing more. Of course, this has not prevented the journalist Tim McMahon from reporting that there are directors of the franchise who are confident that they will be granted the game, something they ask because in the regulatory time it ended in tables.

One way or another, the match went to the Spurs. They traced the duel without LaMarcus Aldrige, his best man and forced the first extension thanks to the incredible performance of Lonnie Walker IV, who scored 28 points and was the absolute leader of his own. First he scored a triple less than four minutes to the end and then scored two consecutive within the last 45 seconds that put the tie and forced the extra time with Jakob Poltl plug included (6 + 15 + 5 + 1 + 5, great his performance). A failure of Harden on the horn could not undo the tie after the first time added, and free throws by DeRozan (23 + 5 + 9) gave the home advantage in the absence of just a few seconds. The game ended with a foul in attack by La Barba and a free kick from Walker, who put the final 135-133 that sentenced a duel marked by protests and continued controversy.

Partidazo the one that was lived in the AT&T Center. The Rockets, who had a new stellar Capela (22 + 21 with 9 of 9 shots, the first with numbers like that from Mutombo and the first to catch more than 19 rebounds in 8 consecutive games since 1976), lost coba with the fourth position that occupy the Mavericks, of which they remain to a victory. San Antonio on the other hand takes the victory in a rough and bad encounter on the other hand and that was resolved by miracle, but wins a contender in a duel in which, by the way, Byron Forbes (25 points) scored more than three times Harden (5) throwing 14 less (6). A good sign for a franchise that is going to have to improve a lot if you want to qualify for the playoffs, but that playing what is probably the worst basketball you remember in the Popovich era are only one and a half victory from the eighth playoff spot . No one would say it ... or everyone would say it. The Spurs are still alive.



Photos from as.com
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