We went over the big NBA Finals overtime tussle ‘tween the Lakers and Magic in pretty detailed fashion this morning, but this photo warrants a little more discussion, IMHO. Yes, it’s time once again to play America’s favorite game show, “Is That Goaltending?”
Sunday’s contestants — Courtney Lee of the Magic and Pau Gasol of the Lakers, the latter caught dipping his hand in the cookie jar on this layup attempt with 0.6 seconds left. Goaltending, or just an innocent rim massage? You be the judge.
From THE WORLD OF ISAAC:
I actually don’t care who wins this series. And there have been some terrible calls back and forth….
But last I checked, you weren’t allowed to stick your hand through the rim to try and block a shot….
Yeah, even if it didn’t alter the shot, I’m pretty sure sticking your hand up through the rim, grabbing it and hanging on the net cords — while the ball is still in the upward portion of its arc — is goaltending. Not being sarcastic here; I’m not exactly certain of the rule. But if it is illegal, it just proves once again that basketball, especially at the NBA level, is virtually impossible to officiate with any degree of consistency. The thing that bugs me most about watching the NBA playoffs is how just about every game is pretty much decided on which way the officiating wind blows.
That’s not to say that the officials aren’t doing the best they can. But a good example came on Hedo Turkoglu’s leaning shot that went in for the Magic with about three minutes remaining in regulation, but was waved off as he was called for an offensive foul. Replays seemed to show that the contact was negligible; it should have been a no-call. But how does an official judge something like that? It’s impossible; he has to guess.
Our photo above seems a bit more more clear cut, however.
Wait, did I say that the officiating is what bugs me most about the playoffs? As the horrifying photo below suggests, I stand corrected.