Raptors file protest after controversial 'clock malfunction'
NBA has already supported decision that correct call was made
Still feeling robbed of a victory, the Toronto Raptors aren't ready to give up quite yet.
According to ESPN's Marc Stein, the Raptors filed an official protest on Wednesday after the NBA upheld its controversial decision to wave off Terrence Ross' buzzer beater in a 102-99 loss to the Sacramento Kings on Sunday night.
The Toronto Raptors filed an official protest with the league office on Tuesday night surrounding Sunday's finish in Sacramento, sources say—@ESPNSteinLine
Trailing by three points with 2.4 seconds remaining, Ross appeared to have tied the game with a three-pointer at the buzzer. But after a lengthy review, the referees determined that the clock malfunctioned and should have started when DeMarcus Cousins deflected DeMarre Carroll's inbound pass. The ruling was that Ross took 2.5 seconds to shoot, thus nullifying the basket and giving the Kings the victory.
Byron Spruell, the president of league operations, supported the officials' decision in a press release the following day stating that "the game was officiated correctly by NBA rules."
The official protest will cost the Raptors $10,000 US, although the team will be reimbursed if the decision is overturned.
The NBA has five business days to review the protest.
Successful protests are extremely rare in the NBA as only one decision has been overturned since 1982. During a Miami Heat-Atlanta Hawks game on Dec. 19, 2007, the league granted a protest to the Heat after Atlanta scorekeepers incorrectly disqualified Shaquille O'Neal from the game with 51.9 seconds remaining in overtime. Scorekeepers mistakenly ruled that O'Neal had committed six fouls when he really only had five.
The final 51.9 seconds was replayed several months later but ironically, O'Neal was not involved in the "do-over" as he had since been traded to the Phoenix Suns. The Hawks won the replayed game 114-111 (instead of 117-111).
The Raptors and Kings do not play against each other again in the regular season.
Toronto's official protest was the second of the NBA season. On Wednesday, the league denied the Denver Nuggets' protest of their loss to Memphis on Nov. 8, acknowledging an error by the Replay Centre official but not a misapplication of the playing rules.
With the Nuggets leading 107-106 with 0.7 seconds remaining, possession was awarded to the Grizzlies although the ball appeared to touch a Memphis player and go out of bounds. Marc Gasol then promptly won the game on a tip-in for the Grizzlies before the buzzer sounded.
The NBA has since acknowledged that the incorrect call was made by both the referees and the officials at the Replay Centre. However, the league said on Wednesday that a misapplication of the playing rules is required "to justify the extraordinary remedy of granting a game protest and overturning the game's result."