The Warriors didn’t really beat the Dallas Mavericks because of a questionable score from Kevon Looney, but it certainly had an impact.
After a timeout in the late third quarter, this happened:
The Warriors set up in the Mavericks’ half of the court… but the Mavericks were nowhere to be found. Kevon Looney, ever aware, took the ball and put it in for an uncontested score.
Golden State won the game 127-125, though the result was secured with a couple late Looney free throws that put them up 127-122 with a second remaining.
As he told reporters and the broadcast crew, Dallas Owner Mark Cuban confirmed he would protest the result.
Here’s his explanation, as he posted on Twitter:
For those wondering about the play with 1:54 to go on the 3rd, let me explain what happened. The ref called Mavs ball . The announcer announced it. Then there was a timeout . During the time out the official changed the call and never told us. Then when they saw us line up as if it were our ball, he just gave the ball to the warriors. Never said a word to us They got an easy basketball. Crazy that it would matter in a 2 point game. Worst officiating non call mistake possibly in the history of the NBA . All they had to do was tell us and they didn’t.
It’s a pretty dramatic accusation to call it the “Worst officiating non call mistake possibly in the history of the NBA.”
Steve Kerr responded after the game, joking about it, saying, “I had to stop and think, ‘Wait, isn’t this our basket?’”
Kerr said he thought it was pretty clear it was the Warriors’ ball.
Looney laughed it off and thanked Jordan Poole for the points that gave him a double-double”
Here’s another look at the replay, which seems to indicate that:
It appears like the referee on the baseline indicates that it’s Warriors ball. The Mavericks don’t seem to check, assuming that it was their ball.
Jason Kidd said after the game that he wanted the referees to clarify who had possession of the ball, indicating there was “confusion” about who had possession. He’d hoped the referees would clarify possession and get the two teams set, lamenting that he didn’t get an explanation.
Here’s what the refs had to say:
It appears, as Kidd identified, that the Mavericks thought it was their ball because referees pointed to the their bench. That, they say, was an indication of a timeout.
The result will likely hold, which would drop the Mavericks to 36-37 and the 9th seed, and move the Warriors to 38-36 and the 6th seed.