The NBA’s last-two-minute report for Friday’s heart-stopping Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinals between the Washington Wizards and Boston Celtics showed a trio of errors — as determined by the league after the fact — in the final 41 seconds of play.
The first came with 41.2 seconds to play. After reviewing footage, the league said that Boston center Al Horford set an illegal screen on Bradley Beal, though he was not called for the infraction. Here’s how the league put it in the report:
“Horford (BOS) establishes a wide screening position and extends his arms into Beal (WAS), delivering the contact.”
The screen allowed Avery Bradley to come loose from Beal. Bradley made a 15-foot jump shot to put the Celtics back in front, 89-87.
Next, is another infraction by Horford. The league ruled he should have been called for defensive three seconds with 33 seconds to play. That would have given the Wizards a free throw.
“Horford (BOS) is in the paint without actively guarding an opponent for longer than three seconds.”
Lastly, and most crucial to Boston fans, the NBA says Isaiah Thomas should have had more time to shoot the final shot of the game. Washington sent Kelly Oubre Jr. into the game to use its foul to give before Boston’s final possession. When Boston threw the ball to Kelly Olynyk, Oubre immediately fouled to shave some time off the clock.
The NBA said Saturday that the clock ran for an extra second — from 2.7 to 1.7. The league said it was an error by the clock operator. Such a mistake cannot be reviewed by instant replay. Thomas went on to miss a deep 3-pointer just before time expired.
Game 7 between the teams is Monday at TD Garden. The winner advances to the Eastern Conference Finals to face LeBron James and the NBA champion Cleveland Cavaliers.
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