Basketball tipsters were cursing their luck last night as controversy struck night in the Raptors-Kings game. Referees ruled Terence Ross had not made his game-tying three-pointer in time, handing the game to the Kings 102-99. With just 2.4 seconds left on the clock DeMarcus Cousins tipped the ball to Ross, who took two dribbles and nailed the three-pointer only for the ref to rule that the clock was started too late.
The drama started when the Kings tried to use up the last 27.2 seconds of time but failed to hit the rim on a shot in time, giving them a 24 second violation. The refs then said that there were 2.4 seconds left on the clock (not, as simple maths suggests 3.2). The clock wasn’t re-started when Cousins touched the ball and that meant that Ross didn’t get the shot off on time, game over.
The controversy clearly affected the players and the coaching staff with Raptors head coach Dwane Casey smashing his clipboard after seeing the decision and Kyle Lowry refusing to comment to reporters afterwards fearing he would be fined for speaking his mind.
NBA Crew Chief Mike Callahan confirmed after the game to reporters that the clock didn’t start correctly when the ball was tipped and that the shot was timed at 2.5 seconds according to the digital timer on the screen in the replay center meaning that the shot wasn’t in time.
The question is if the clock had been correct would Ross have taken the shot sooner. When shooting he would have been able to have seen the clock and had it been running properly it’s possible he would have; however, there is no way to know that for sure. Raptors fans online have asked why the last 2.4 seconds wasn’t replayed to give a fairer outcome than merely handing the game to the Kings. No doubt those with basketball tips backing the Raptors would agree wholeheartedly.
The decision leaves the Raptors fifth in the conference with an 8-5 record; a victory in the game would have seen them tie with second-placed Atlanta Hawks.
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