The shot clock

I’ve put up a fresh story with quotes from the locker room.

As you might imagine, Mike Woodson was pretty steamed.

His full press conference (questions approximated)

Q: What happened with the apparent shot clock malfunction?

A: I’m not going to comment on it at this time. We’re just going to file a protest without a doubt, let the league review it at the two-minute mark and then see what they think.

Q: What role did that play in the game?
A: We’ve got a one-point lead with the ball going the other way and we’re rushing to get a shot because the clock is not in our favor. You figure it out.

Q: How do you rate the team’s defense?

A: It was a great game. If you’re a fan or you’re watching it on TV, it was a great game tonight, both ways. Both teams fought, didn’t want to give an inch. Unfortunately, it had to come down this way, but as an organization, we have to do what’s right for our organization and our basketball team.

Q: Is it difficult to lose a game like this?

A: Sure it is. We’re playing hard, just like they are. It’s a [heck] of a game tonight. Both teams are fighting, wanting to win. It’s a shame it’s got to come down to that, but, hey, it’s what it is, and we’ll figure it out when the league reviews it.

My initial suspicion is that the league won’t force the teams to play the game over again. Here’s why. When David Stern overturned the Hawks’ overtime win over Miami in Dec. 2007 and called for a replay, he judged that there was “gross negligence” in the scoring table giving Shaquille O’Neal an extra foul.

It’s a lot harder to establish that what happened tonight was gross negligence. Clearly, it was a mistake and a bad one, but shot clock malfunctions happen from time to time. The game moves fast and I imagine it’s hard to be perfect on it.

When a player is called for a foul, the referee goes over the scorer’s table and tells the scorer the number of the player charged with the foul. If you mess that up – a matter of record keeping which is something that can be corrected after play has resumed – I think that’s a little different.

Suspicious timing? Sure. But let’s say for argument’s sake that the timekeeper was trying to help out Cleveland. Do you think he (or she) would think he could get away with something so obvious? I wouldn’t.

(Of course, the counter-argument is that, Well, he did get away with it, so, yes, he did think he could get away with it. And my answer to that is, I don’t know what happened with the officials. They wouldn’t give an explanation after the game to a pool reporter. I’m sitting next to ESPN reporter Chris Sheridan, who says that video replay can’t be used for shot clock malfunctions. So, one more reason why the protest may not go very far.)

90 comments Add your comment

Hawk n the Ham

December 31st, 2009
12:16 am

Dingleberry. That’s all I have to say. Dingle. Berry.

Time

December 31st, 2009
12:17 am

First. David Stern needs to go.

Timbo

December 31st, 2009
12:17 am

Hawks were screwed . . .

e-dogg

December 31st, 2009
12:17 am

Second……………the got jacked in cleveland-o-dump

Hawk n the Ham

December 31st, 2009
12:19 am

David Stern is currently doing the Electric Slide at Lebron’s Bday party.

JeJe

December 31st, 2009
12:22 am

Good luck in January, Hawks.

Lose in 2nd round to Cavs. Win 53games

Whoop dee doo. OUr win total will go up, meaning Woody gets a 4 yr extension

THIS ROSTER IS NOT GOING TO COMEPTE FOR A CHAMPIONSHIP., TRADE BIBBY. TRADE MARVIN

cavsfan09

December 31st, 2009
12:22 am

it’s funny i have yet to hear anything about how the Hawks gave up a 17 point lead

Roberto

December 31st, 2009
12:30 am

hock

December 31st, 2009
12:34 am

A great power forward trying to play center + a small forward who is soft as a marshmallow = one and done in the playoffs.

chem

December 31st, 2009
12:34 am

It’s easy to give up a 17 point lead when the other team cheats.

Roberto

December 31st, 2009
12:38 am

cavsfan09 this is what a guy on youtube said “the only reason why they lost the lead was because Lebron kept going the line and he knows this you cannot beat him when he knows he is gonna get those calls its a disgrace the game is fixed and we all saw it, the clock was icing on the cake.” and this is what another person said And it wasn’t just the shot clock.

Cavs shot 23 more free throws than the Hawks. ( 38 – 15 )

Hawks only shot 3 TOTAL FREE THROWS in the 2nd half. Three

The Hawks blew a huge lead, no doubt on that. But that game was literally stolen from them via the refs in the 2nd half, and especially in the 4th quarter.

Cavs got every call, Hawks got NONE.

Where is Tim Doughnay at? I bet he is LHAO somewhere, saying that the fix was in tonight.

and I agree with both of them.

cavsfan09

December 31st, 2009
12:39 am

They cheated on 17 points? You know why the Hawks are not an elite championship contending team? Because they whine and complain eveytime things don’t go their way just like their fans. It’s easy to get into their heads and disrupt them

SWAT Native

December 31st, 2009
12:45 am

Ken,

Does the blistering you took on the previous blog have anything to do with your “fresh story”?

Moxie

December 31st, 2009
12:50 am

Please cavsfan09 you are on a “Pro-Hawks” blog. Don’t be upset by the comments we Hawks fan make. I think it would be different if we were on a Cavs blog. So all that you have to say is null void.

tt

December 31st, 2009
12:51 am

cavsfan09

December 31st, 2009
12:53 am

I actually think the Hawks have a decent team, and the Cavs had to go through these kind of things as well. i’m just saying if they would concentrate on making themselves better than blaming it on the refs they could have something there

JSmoove10

December 31st, 2009
12:55 am

cavsfan09, the Hawks are an elite team. It’s just that we don’t have a pre-madonna spoiled child like Lebron James on our team that whines every time a foul is called on him and has every call go his way and if he is so much as touched the other team gets called for a foul.

shannon

December 31st, 2009
12:58 am

If you couldn’t the the favoritism in this game you are blind!

cavsfan09

December 31st, 2009
1:01 am

that’s funny i’ve heard the same about Josh Smith, anyway to be an elite team you have to do more than have a good regular season, and get past more than win a 1st round series

chem

December 31st, 2009
1:02 am

I don’t know if they cheated the other 17 points but at least they didn’t need the frigin clock keepers help for the other 17. They did, in fact, cheat when the game was on the line. Watch the video posted above. I guess you can’t upset the “king” on his Bday. Remember, the cavs played themselves into that 17 point deficit in the first place. Was that part of the plan or should they write a story about that too?

Time

December 31st, 2009
1:04 am

Cavsfan – You Cavs do more than their fair share of whining. Hell, every time you see the officials talking anything over you see King James right there in the middle adding his opinion.

There can be no arguement that the Hawks got jobbed tonight. This is NOT just some anti-Hawks conspiracy either. The more I watch the league, and I watch alot, I see this kind of stuff happening in many games I don’t even have a rooting interest in.

Varejo should have been fouled out by the end of the first half. All that guy does is throw bows at people. Yet he has one foul called on him the entire game? Come on, even a Cavalier fan has to acknowledge that Varejo committed more than one foul tonight.

And god bless Josh Smith. I don’t know how he does it. I would have already flipped my lid and decked a ref. The guy is consistently mugged every time he takes it into the paint. Like I said in the other blog, it about takes the opponent whipping out a 9 iron and clubbing him in the balls to get a call.

How can there not be a problem with officiating when just about any NBA fan from any city will concede that there is definitely “star” treatment for some players by the refs. The mere fact that the star treatment is commonly accepted by all fans shows there is in fact a problem. A foul is a foul, no matter what the name on the back of the jersey says. But, we all know that’s not how the league is ran.

Stern needs to go. The entire roster of referees needs to be replaced. Games were SOOOOO much better officiated when they had the replacement refs doing the games. Mistakes were made, but there wasn’t a pattern to the “mistakes”. There is a clear and definite pattern with this bunch.

Ken Sugiura

December 31st, 2009
1:04 am

SWAT Native – thanks for asking. no, it didn’t have anything to do with it. they got after me pretty good, though. i’ve been mulling posting an explanation of what happened.i’d be curious for your (or anyone else’s) thoughts about that idea.

JSmoove10

December 31st, 2009
1:08 am

yeah the difference between Josh Smith and Lebron James is that the NBA is the biggest fan of Lebron. The NBA is not a big fan of Josh Smith. When was the last time LBJ got T’d up? Oh yeah, never. Lebron is the NBA’s mascot. Josh Smith whines and is immature but doesn’t have every single call go his way. You can’t deny this. If you do then you’re blind. Also, you can’t deny that the error on the shot clock cost the Hawks in a crucial time of a crucial game and changed the course of the game.

cavsfan09

December 31st, 2009
1:08 am

you’re right it was a bad call i won’t dispute that, but it didn’t cost them the game, and you are right that the Cavs did play themsevles into that hole, but an elite team such as the Lakers, Celtics, Magic, or Cavs wouldn’t have settled for a one on one situation on every possesion.

Time

December 31st, 2009
1:13 am

Ken, what I’d like to see from you is some investigative reporting. Stern somehow managed to make the Donaghy thing go away with no real scrutiny ever placed on him or the officials as a group. Games like tonight scream out for the need for there to be a serious investigation into the officiating and the agenda of the league that allows the “star treatment” to become a almost accepted part of the game.

A foul is a foul is a foul. Were this game officiated legitimately then Varejo would have been gone by halftime. LeBron would have been gone by the end of the 3rd. Watch the tapes, the fouls are there for anyone to see….except they don’t get called.

JSmoove10

December 31st, 2009
1:13 am

maybe it didn’t cost them the game but the very least it changed the game and deserved to be reviewed by the league and possibly replayed. the fact of the matter is that nothing was done about a crucial error made at that point in the game. why was nothing done? God forbid that King James lose on his 25th birthday. That would be a day to live in infamy for the NBA to have their mascot lose on his bday.

SWAT Native

December 31st, 2009
1:17 am

Ken,

Since a lot of people seemed to be very upset, I think that you probably should.

gdg73

December 31st, 2009
1:17 am

How in the hell did Varejao only have one foul in the game? And he got that one in the 4th quarter. Tim Donaghy was telling the truth in his book a la Jose Canseco whenhe snitched on the steroid users. David Stern cares only about his superstars and his high profile teams. Lebron lowered his shoulder on one play and mowed Josh down in the lane. Guess who got the foul? If the Hawks meet Cleveland in the playoffs, there is no way the referees will let them win. This was one of the worst officiated games I have ever seen. Just watched the highlights on the NBA Network. Varejao fouled Crawford and Bibby on two made baskets in the 1st quarter. He fouled Josh going to the basket and pushed Horford squarely in the back while backing into the lane. All blatant fouls. Since when did he get the superstar treatment? The two in-studio analysts just said that Varejo’s foot was on the line on the three pointer. WTF were the referees looking at? i’m still pissed!!

JDUB

December 31st, 2009
1:24 am

The Hawks didn’t deserve to win after blowing that lead. However, the ’star treatement’ crap is getting old. LBJ, Garnett, Kobe, it’s obvious. I can’t stand it. That’s why I have no respect for the NBA. None. I hate Stern and his “we have to be kind to the refs because we can’t get any as good as these” attitude. The replacement refs were a disaster? Maybe that’s because Mr. Stern picked them and told them to ref the games tight. I hate the refs. I hate them. Star treatment is the biggest bunch of bullcrap. If they “stars” are that good, then why give them so many calls? If Stern is so concerned about making the NBA more competitive, wouldn’t it make sense to give the calls to the bad players to even things out? I hate this “I’ll call a foul when I see fit” referree ideal. I can’t stand it!

gdg73

December 31st, 2009
1:25 am

Time, you were right on time with that post. Varejao was hacking his arse off.And what about when Marvin was called for elbowing a Cav player on a shot in the lane. And it wasn’t even his off elbow. Marvin was in the act of shooting and his right elbow grazed the player as he went up for a shot which he made. Another bogus call.

JSmoove10

December 31st, 2009
1:35 am

Ken,

I’ve looked at all the major sports media outlets and not one of them has picked up the shot clock issue. The AP recap, NBA.com, and ESPN don’t even mention it. Why would they not report an incident that had a major impact on the final result of a big game? Sekou should pick up on this tomorrow on his hangtime blog.

birddawgbill

December 31st, 2009
1:37 am

I honestly think the league mandates these type of calls when it involves the league darlings. Lebron, Kobe, etc. they want them to win in the regular season for home court advantage in the playoffs.Then in the playoffs they want them to go deep and as long as they have two teams with these so called superstars in the finals they get better ratings which = more money. And the fact ofthe matter is I dont think if the games were called evenly that these so called superstars would be that great. Lets face it a highschool kid dunked on Lebron which he whined about trying to get the video blocked.

khao$

December 31st, 2009
1:46 am

I don’t want to hear anything about “the Hawks blew a 17 point lead.”
In between that time EVERY CALL went the Cavs way. Secondly, calls aside, this in the NBA, good teams make runs. All of that out of the way, the clock malfunction did change the dynamic of the game because when the Cavs took possession of the ball, they took the lead. I’m sick of the NBA’s referee’s getting off scott free and reporters/NBA insiders making every excuse for them. The calls seemingly always go the way of Stern’s golden boys. Imagine if the NFL had the same officiating. Dallas and the 49ers would be in the conference finals every year. It’s sickening and inexcusible. But hey, the Hawks shouldn’t have blown a 17 point lead.

gdg73

December 31st, 2009
1:48 am

Don’t get me wrong, Lebron and Kobe are the two best players in the league, but why give them added preferential treatment? If you don’t have a superstar in this league, you have no chance of winning. Now I see what they mean when they say “star-driven league”. Why is it that the national media turns a deaf ear when cheating allegations are made against the NFL and NBA and the two league commissioners (Stern and Goodell) brush them off? They are more worried about player conduct and dress codes. Something stinks with the NBA and I think it happens to be Stern. He is one arrogant SOB!!!

uga-brave

December 31st, 2009
1:48 am

aint it great to have a nba quality team in atlanta again?

i remember when i was in athens from 85-90 when the hawks were the thing.

i lived in a fraternity house on south lumpkin street and had subscription to the AJC and could not wait to read the box scores and see how many nique scored or how many rebounds kevin willis had.

remember antione carr or good news cliff levingston?

enjoy this, this is a good team. well coached.

the cavs got the larry bird, kevin mchale treatmaent tonight.

horford must become a thug inside for this team to go deep though.

birddawgbill

December 31st, 2009
1:49 am

Jdub did the Hawks really blow the lead or did the refs give those 17 to the Cavs. Varejao is a thug that never got called for a foul. I cant even count the number of times he shoved Hawks down with no call. If the Cavs have any class at all they should go to the league and say look that was wrong lets redo those last two mins.

birddawgbill

December 31st, 2009
1:57 am

Does the league not realize Josh Smith is one of the top 10 all around players in the league. They need to realize not all of us fans just watch for the dunks but we watch for good D also.
But in saying that is anyone else not getting tired of watching the one man show of Joe Johnson in the last minute of close games. Early in the year when he said the Hawks were playing selfish I think what he really meant was “The rest of the team is not letting me take every shot.”

gdg73

December 31st, 2009
1:59 am

By the way, Jeff Schultz is a JACKARSE!!!

ESPN

December 31st, 2009
2:01 am

NBA.com is too busy celebrating Lebron’s birthday. ESPN has notice the shot clock issue.

gdg73

December 31st, 2009
2:03 am

Joe was not the problem in this game, sorry. When he was doubled he found the open man. When he was guarded by one man he tried to take him off the dribble. The problem occurred when he found the open man, they got hammered and didnt get the calls. It happened to Josh, Horford, Bibby, and Crawford on numerous occassions.

gdg73

December 31st, 2009
2:06 am

Rihanna was on the sideline sitting next to Akon, celebrating Lebron’s every move. Somebody should have “Chris Brown(d)” her arse! Lol!!!!!

«ÜFØ»

December 31st, 2009
2:13 am

¿Who remembers when the raptors got screwed in Atlanta? ººººº Î sëë Û ¤¤¤¤*

birddawgbill

December 31st, 2009
2:23 am

They had the ball with 17 seconds on the clock JJ held it for 11 why not pass it and make the cavs chase it. The Hawks O works much better with ball movement. He did pass it to Bibby but only after seeing he wasnt going to be allowed a shot. But actually tonight wasnt what I was talking about. I like JJ I just think he needs to trust his teammates more in crunch time. And he called out the rest of the team so why doesnt someone call him out. I cant remember the exact game but about 3 weeks ago he took the last 4 or 5 shots missing them all and covered on all but one. And he had missed his last 7 or 8 before that.

northcyde

December 31st, 2009
2:29 am

Sugiura . . . what the heck man?

Seriously?

A shot clock not resetting when the other team is going the other way isn’t “gross negilgence”? It’s one thing if the team retained possession, and they made a mistake with the shot clock. But that wasn’t the case.

This isn’t a situation in which the clock failed to start for a few seconds or something like that. When have you EVER seen something like this? A team basically getting 15 seconds have a possesion, because the timekeeper didn’t reset the shot clock? And what’s worse, none of the 3 referees noticed that ish, even when Woodson was dang near losing his mind on the sideline?

They could’ve reviewed that right then and there, corrected the situation, taken the Cavs points off the board, and give us the ball back in that situation. Instead, they basically ignored it and acted like it didn’t happen.

I’m so disappointed in you Atlanta sportswriters. And you guys still have that BS headline, talking about ANOTHER 4TH QUARTER FLOP. Flop my a**. This game was nothing like Tuesday night’s game. Now that game was a flop. This game was literally stolen from us.

I bet if this happened in Philly, the sportswriters who covered the Sixers would be far less diplomatic about this situation.

How about researching this, Ken Mauer was the lead referee in this game. Does his name ring a bell? Maybe this link will help you out. And make sure you read his entire entry

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ken_Mauer

Not only does this dude have a criminal record, he was a ref in the INFAMOUS Miami vs Dallas 2006 NBA Finals. The Finals in which Dwyane Wade literally had a parade to the free throw line after Game 2.

neshield

December 31st, 2009
2:35 am

This is the first game that i can remember that I, as a fan, have felt totally cheated. The game was completely changed due to the ineptness of the refs. How do you not know if the shot clock was reset or not. Why not look at the replay and get the call right??? How does one player (LBJ) shoot more free throws than the entire opposing team?? I hope that the league suspends all three and we get to play the last 2:00 again like a couple of years ago against the Heat. This was the most OUTRAGEOUS game officiating wise. If we can ever play them straight up then we will see if our team has the ability to compete against them but as of right now we don’t know because we are playing the refs and the cavs. I’m a LBJ fan but you can’t run over two players and the foul be against them thats insane!!

JSmoove10

December 31st, 2009
2:39 am

Chris Sheridan writes a great piece on the shot clock issue in The Daily Dime on ESPN.com

http://espn.go.com/nba/dailydime/_/page/dime-091230/daily-dime

«ÜFØ»

December 31st, 2009
2:53 am

I hope sekou makes the shot clock issue big deal on NBA.com because it is. The whole United States needs to know the NBA refs are corrupt just like Mexican cops

Wabe

December 31st, 2009
2:54 am

cavsfan:
“you’re right it was a bad call i won’t dispute that, but it didn’t cost them the game, and you are right that the Cavs did play themsevles into that hole, but an elite team such as the Lakers, Celtics, Magic, or Cavs wouldn’t have settled for a one on one situation on every possesion.”

Elite teams such as the Lakers, C’s, Magic, or Cavs wouldn’t have settled for one on one situations on every possession? Last I heard, Cleveland’s been getting bounced from playoff series after playoff series because they play 1 on 5 ball with Lebron.

It’s obvious the Hawks have some work to do in terms of end of game offensive efficiency. Woody must accept this task and clean up some of the things we’ve resorted to in these 2 games. Learn from this experience and hope that we’re a bit better the next time we play them.

In the sweep in last season’s playoffs, the Hawks just looked like a team that was overmatched when playing Cleveland. Didn’t look like that this time around. Atlanta is more than capable of playing with Cleveland. Sure, we didn’t pull out a W. We failed to close these games out. But that’s a problem that can be resolved with tactical changes + more games together. The Hawks will play their share of grind-it-out type of games.

We have 3 games before we play Boston-Orlando-Boston. We’ll see if these Hawks can put these games behind them and rebound strong.

Volman

December 31st, 2009
3:03 am

“They cheated on 17 points? You know why the Hawks are not an elite championship contending team? Because they whine and complain eveytime things don’t go their way just like their fans. It’s easy to get into their heads and disrupt them”

Cavsfan… You must not watch many Cleveland games, because I see Lebron and his other cronies on his team complaining and whining to the referees on EVERY call that they don’t get.. They EXPECT to get every call.

Your logic is miserably flawed at best. You have zero point.

«ÜFØ»

December 31st, 2009
3:07 am

The NBA has turn into Mexico, so much corruption.