With a three-point margin of victory for Los Angeles in their In Season Tournament quarterfinals victory over the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday, fans have been nitpicking many aspects of the late-game officiating.
The Suns players even took to social media to complain about a timeout Los Angeles was allowed to call during the closing seconds resulting in many fans eager to see if the league would discuss this call or acknowledge an error.
Well, the Last Two Minute Report has officially been released and while the NBA admits they made three errors during the final 120 seconds, the timeout call allowed by the Lakers on an inbounds to Austin Reaves isn’t one of them.
Last 2 Minute Report had 3 missed calls, all against the Suns, including what would’ve been Kevin Durant’s 6th foul. pic.twitter.com/W72OxuCtgG— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) December 6, 2023
The three missed calls were a Grayson Allen reach-in foul on Reaves with 1:34 on the clock, a Kevin Durant shooting foul on James, which would have taken Durant out of the game, and a Jusuf Nurkic foul on Davis with 43.1 seconds left.
So, it turns out the Lakers have more justification to be frustrated with officiating than the Suns do.
NBA Crew Chief Josh Tiven did discuss during the Pool Report the reasoning for the timeout, stating, “Austin Reaves had his left hand on the ball while it's pinned against his left leg, which does constitute control”.
The pool report for why the Lakers were awarded a timeout late in tonight's win over the Suns: pic.twitter.com/9TanRxBvSY— Khobi Price (@khobi_price) December 6, 2023
I’ve never heard of control being allowed with a hand on the ball and the ball pinned against your left leg, but then again, I never read the rule book front to back and it's safe to assume most fans haven't either.
Debates on these calls are likely far from over, but at this point, it has been addressed, the matter was ruled in real-time and afterward, the NBA still came to the same conclusion. It was a timeout by the Lakers. People might disagree, but it’s time to move on.
Now the Lakers will travel to Las Vegas to participate in the In-Season Tournament semifinals facing Davis’ former team, the New Orleans Pelicans and the Phoenix Suns will set their sights on a matchup against the Sacramento Kings on Friday.
You can follow Edwin on Twitter at @ECreates88.