The L.A. Lakers have a chance to close out this Western Conference playoff business tonight, but Phil Jackson still has a proverbial bone to pick with the officiating in Game 4 against the San Antonio Spurs. Remember, LA was the team who benefited from an incorrect call in that game.
The bee in Philjax’s bonnet came after the NBA refs acknowledged Derek Fisher should have been whistled for a foul on Brent Barry, since there was no mention of Fisher’s shot with 6.9 seconds left and whether or not it hit the rim.
That shot, which was ruled an air ball, touched a Spurs player and went out of bounds, giving the Lakers a hurried-up shot with 2 seconds left on the shot clock. Kobe Bryant missed it, setting up the Spurs’ final play, which resulted in the aforementioned controversial call.
“What did they say about the 24-second clock? … They didn’t want to go all the way? You’ve got to start peeling that onion a long way back, don’t you, if you start opening it up.”
It’s a little curious why Jackson is pressing the issue so late after the game, and so early before he and his team are favored to close out the series tonight. But perhaps he’s asking why since the league decided to take a stance on the Fisher-to-Barry “foul,” they don’t go back and review that play and every other play, and make a public statement on it.
Well, here’s why. The Lakers won the game. There’s no controversy when a team wins a game despite blown calls their way. Manu Ginobili could have shivved Sasha Vujacic in transition defense and if there was no call yet the Lakers won the game, there’s no clamoring from the Lakers faithful. That’s just how it goes.