When Is a Dunk Not a Dunk? Ask James Harden
It’s the call that has become the talk of the sporting world and one that is still be debated long after the end of the contest.
James Harden slammed an uncontested dunk with a little under eight minutes to play with his Houston Rockets a healthy way ahead, 102-89, of the San Antonio Spurs, but then something very odd happened.
When Harden forced the ball through it got stuck in the netting, span around, and to the watching officials it appeared that his effort had missed. However the ball had clearly fallen through the hoop and should have counted.
The Rockets then went on to lose to the Spurs and now Harden’s side is demanding that either they are awarded the win or the final 7:50 to be replayed, though neither seems likely.
Replaying a game wouldn’t be a first, in 2008 the Miami Heat and Atlanta Hawks replayed the last 51 seconds of overtime due to the fact that Shaquille O’Neal had been incorrectly fouled out.
Rockets’ coach Mike D’Antoni protested the call but this fell on deaf ears and the fact that Houston spent that time complaining in a perplexed manner meant that they missed the 30-second window for challenges.
The game went into double overtime before the Spurs won 135-133 in what was a thrilling encounter at the AT & T Center.
Harden nonetheless scored a whopping 50 points but still ended up on the losing side and the Rockets now sit behind the Mavericks in fifth spot in the Western Conference with a 13-6 record.
It’s an incident that will be played over and over again over the coming weeks and months and caused a great deal of consternation that may take a while to overcome.
Just imagine you had a wager on the match and this horrific piece of officiating cost you your winnings!