Heat Got Screwed by Bad Calls Down the Stretch in Knicks Loss
By Liam McKeone
The New York Knicks narrowly escaped Game 2 with a win over the Miami Heat to even their playoff series at one game apiece. It was no easy task as Miami led for most of the game despite the absence of Jimmy Butler but the Knicks managed to pull ahead in the final five minutes to send the very famous fans in attendance home happy.
They also received some help from the referees in the process. Specifically, two questionable calls went in the Knicks' favor down the stretch that swung momentum and changed the game.
With just under seven minutes to go, the Knicks were down by six points. Jalen Brunson then nailed a three from the corner. A whistle blew and just about everybody was confused until the ref announced that Bam Adebayo had committed an away from the ball foul on Isaiah Hartenstein and was ruled to have committed that foul while Brunson was shooting, meaning the shot was good and the Knicks got an and-1 free throw.
Slow-motion replay suggests that was very much not the case and the shot should not have counted. It wasn't even close, really.
A big swing made bigger by the free throw. The Knicks used the momentum to go up by three points, which brings us to the next late-game error made by the refs.
With three minutes to go Miami was down by three and the shot clock was winding down. Caleb Martin heaved up a deep two and the shot hit the rim. The referees did not see that and declared it a shot-clock violation, preventing an easy rebound and layup from Gabe Vincent lurking below.
Both of these are real-time calls that are tough to make but it is the playoffs. The refs gotta call these correctly.
To be clear, however, their failure to do so did not cost the Heat the game. Miami had plenty of opportunities between and around these calls to make shots and get stops and silence Madison Square Garden. But they undeniably got screwed by poor officiating, which is far more frustrating for both Heat fans and neutral fans than poor shot or decision-making.