NBA officials have long been known to miss a call or ten during a game. Yes, the NBA may be the most difficult sport to officiate, but some calls are so egregious that you can't justify missing them.
Watching and covering the Rockets for many years, I know firsthand about badly missed calls. One comes to mind instantly several years ago when the Rockets faced off against the Warriors, and Kevin Durant was 10 feet out of bounds, and somehow every referee on the court missed that call.
Well, Monday night, the Golden State Warriors were the beneficiary of an obvious foul call that somehow was not called. The Sacramento Kings led most of their game against the Warriors on the road. Steph Curry and friends had a furious comeback to take the lead late and were up by three with under 10 seconds left in the game. The Kings had the ball and ran Kevin Heurter off two screens that got him a decent look from beyond the arc. Klay Thompson was trailing and not only fouled Heurter by putting his hand on his hip but then proceeded to foul him as Heurter tried to follow through on his attempt at sending the game to overtime.
The Kings were irate that Klay Thompson wasn’t whistled for a foul on Kevin Huerter’s game-tying 3-point attempt— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) November 8, 2022
Foul or no foul? pic.twitter.com/IDbdf6dd4T
As you can see from the video, it does not get more obvious than that. Even Warriors fans can't deny that missed foul call.
Understandably the Kings players and coaches were not happy.
Only thing we can do at this point is get fined. Zero accountability— Kevin Huerter (@KevinHuerter) November 8, 2022
Mike Brown held back no words. He thought Kevin Huerter was fouled. pic.twitter.com/TO1hftrVSA— Cameron Salerno (@cameronsalerno1) November 8, 2022
And this is just days after the Portland Trailblazers won a game against the Phoenix Suns on a last second shot by Jerami Grant which the league acknowledged should have been called a traveling violation. This pattern of game-changing blown calls is not what the NBA needs and even worse, in both cases the blown traveling calls underwent video review and they still got it wrong. What’s the point of dragging games out with long video reviews if they aren’t even going to make the right decision?
The NBA is a couple of days behind on releasing its two-minute reports. We’re pretty sure when it does come out it will confirm what we already knew, the Kings were robbed of the chance to send the Warriors game to overtime.
Yes, it is just one game of 82, and it is early in the season, but when you are a team like the Kings who will struggle to get wins all year, one loss like this is a huge deal, and to lose because the officials can’t make obvious foul calls makes it that much worse.
UPDATE (Nov 8, 2022): In the league’s Last Two Minute Report covering this game, the NBA admits Klay Thompson indeed fouled Kevin Heurter on his final shot attempt:
Thompson (GSW) makes contact with Huerter’s (SAC) arm, which affects his jump shot attempt.
Thank you for confirming the obvious, NBA.