There's kicking someone when they're already down, and then there's whatever the NBA officials did to the New York Knicks on Monday. Who would've guessed that a poorly officiated game would end with a terrible call benefitting the Rockets?
As if it wasn't bad enough that New York was without Julius Randle, OG Anunoby, Mitchell Robinson, and Isaiah Hartenstein (and Donte DiVincenzo injured his hamstring), it was made worse by Ed Malloy, Jacyn Goble, and Andy Nagy. Even before the final possession, there were several questionable calls, including the two below.
The Rockets (33) took 21 more free throws than the Knicks (12), yet New York had eight more points in the paint than Houston. If that doesn't raise a red flag, wait.
After Jalen Brunson hit a clutch shot to tie the game at 103 with a little over eight seconds left, the Rockets had the ball. Precious Achiuwa had a huge block on Jalen Brunson, but Aaron Holiday came up with the loose ball. With Brunson defending him, Holiday threw up a last-minute heave from well beyond the three-point line.
Knicks fans breathed a sigh of relief when the shot didn't fall, but that relief was short-lived because of a whistle from Goble.
To make matters worse, the officials reviewed the play but only to determine the time left in the game. Tom Thibodeau had already used his challenge, so Holiday went to the free throw line and hit two to give Houston the 105-103 win.
Knicks fans in uproar after Jalen Brunson whistled for terrible foul call
Let's take a closer look at Holiday's shot. Notice that he kicked his leg out, which cost Donte DiVincenzo earlier in the game.
If it's going to be an awfully officiated game, at least make it an awfully officiated game on both sides.
Imagine going on X (Twitter) after a game and seeing a tweet from Ben Stiller telling you you're bad at your job.
Kendrick Perkins isn't a Knicks fan, but he's a Brunson fan.
In case you want to know how Thibodeau really feels about the officiating, here you go.
It's safe to say that when the Last Two Minute Report comes out on Tuesday afternoon, it's going to be interesting!