Controversy ensued late in Sunday night’s contest between the Dallas Mavericks and Houston Rockets.
With the score tied at 92-92 at Houston’s Toyota Center, Rockets guard James Harden was fouled by Wesley Matthews, and the clock ran all the way down to 0.1 seconds left in the game. Harden missed the first free throw attempt, but made the second one to give the Rockets a 93-92 victory.
The Mavericks argued that crew chief Ken Mauer and the other two referees should have used instant replay to determine if more time should have been put back on the clock. If more time would have been placed on the game clock, that would have given the Mavs more time to negotiate a possible game-winning shot.
That didn’t happen.
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After the game and at the request of the Mavericks, pool reporter Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle asked Mauer why wasn’t the time remaining in the game reviewed when the clock was sitting at 0.1 seconds. Mauer essentially acknowledged that replay in this case was not an option available to him.
"By rule, unless the clock goes to zero, I am not allowed to go over and review and possibly put time back on the clock,’’ Mauer said. "I’m just not allowed to.
"Had the clock gone to zero, then I would have been able to go over and review to look at the clock; but because the clock did not go to zero, without definitive knowledge, I’m not allowed. It’s not a viewable trigger."
The loss was the second in three days by the Mavericks to the Rockets. The Mavericks are now 0-3 going into Wednesday night’s game in Utah.
However, Indiana, Charlotte and the Rockets all advanced to the playoffs last year after starting the season with a 0-3 record.