01.11.08

A Bookie’s Nightmare : The Association Wipes Out A Hawks Win

Posted in Basketball, History's Not Happening at 4:45 pm by

From NBA.com :

The NBA today granted a game protest filed by the Miami Heat after its 117-111 loss to the Atlanta Hawks on December 19 at Philips Arena, which will result in the replay of the final 51.9 seconds of the game™s overtime period with the Hawks leading 114-111. The replay will occur immediately prior to the next scheduled game between the two teams — on March 8, 2008, also at Philips Arena.


The Heat protested the game because, with 51.9 seconds remaining in overtime, the Hawks’ scoring table personnel incorrectly disqualified the Heat’s Shaquille O’Neal “ asserting that a foul committed by O’Neal was his sixth foul of the game, when in fact it was only his fifth. The error occurred because the Hawks™ Official Scorer mistakenly attributed to O™Neal a foul at 3:24 remaining in the fourth period that was actually called against the Heat™s Udonis Haslem.

NBA Commissioner David Stern found that the Hawks were grossly negligent in committing this scoring error, since they failed to follow league-mandated scoring procedures and failed to respond effectively when the members of the statisticians’ crew noticed the mistake. Because of this conduct by Atlanta’s personnel, Miami suffered a clear competitive disadvantage, as O™Neal “ the Heat™s second leading scorer and rebounder that night “ was removed from a one-point game with only 51.9 seconds remaining. Under this unprecedented set of circumstances, the Commissioner granted the Heat’s protest, and fined the Hawks $50,000 for their violation of league rules.

Incredibly, this isn’t the first time a result has been nullified via an upheld protest. A Lakers double OT win over San Antonio on November 30, 1982 had to be partially replayed 4 months later. The Elias Koteas Sports Bureau hasn’t returned my calls about the reason for Los Angeles’ complaint, but it might’ve had something to do with Steve Mix and Billy Paultz making the event too glamorous.

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