Pacers down Cavs, now have wins against top 4 teams – but were the Cavs robbed?

February 11, 2009 in Basketball, Indiana Pacers, NBA by pacejmiller


Lebron and Coach Brown couldn't believe the call.  Were they robbed?  See video below.

Lebron and Coach Brown couldn't believe the call. Were they robbed? See video below.

Pacers complete quartet of victories against top teams

The Indiana Pacers continue their trend of beating the best teams and losing to the worst.  After losing to the last-place Washington Wizards in the previous game, the Pacers returned to Conseco Fieldhouse and beat Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, 96-95.  Lebron decimated the Pacers with 47 points, but a highly disputed late foul against him cost them the game (see below and decide for yourself if it was fair).

The Pacers now have wins over the top 4 teams in the NBA – reigning champs Boston Celtics, the Los Angeles Lakers, the Orlando Magic and the Clevland Cavaliers.  It would be a lot more impressive if they were not still 12th out of 15 teams in the East and 3.5 games out of the 8th and final playoff spot with a record of 21-32.

Controversy at the end of the game

The end to this game was very interesting and controversial. 

With the game tied 93-93, TJ for hit a jumper with 0.8 seconds left ont he clock to give the Pacers a 2-point lead.  After a time-out, the Cavs threw an inbound alley-oop to Lebron James.  Danny Granger tips the ball away, makes some contact with Lebron.  Foul called on Granger.  Pacers bench and coach O’Brien incensed.  Lebron makes both free throws to tie it 95 all with 0.4 seconds left on the clock.  Next play after the time-out, the Pacers try the same play for Granger.  Lebron tips the ball away, makes some contact with Granger.  Foul called on Lebron and Granger makes the first and misses the second on purpose.  Game, set, match.  Pacers win 96-95.  Lebron and Coach Brown are incensed.

Post match interviews

In the post-game interviews, Mike Brown was basically asking for the NBA to fine him: “I went back and I watched the last two plays. That last call on LeBron (James) was the worst call that I’ve ever been a part of. It was an awful call and for him to take away a basketball game from a team with .04 seconds on the clock is irresponsible. We got the game taken away from us, absolutely horrible. I feel badly for the guys in the locker room.”

He then added: “We played OK. We played well enough to give ourselves an opportunity. That game should have gone into overtime. He determined the outcome. If they want to fine me for telling the truth, then fine me.”

And Lebron himself had this to say on the two plays: “I thought the one call on Granger against me was questionable. There was definitely some contact, enough for a whistle to be blown… But it could have gone both ways. The last call against me was not questionable at all. No contact was made. The pass was short. You couldn’t go to the rim. There was no way he could catch it and go up with four-tenths of a second. I was able to get a hand on it. Being the competitor I am, to have a game taken away like that, it hurts. It definitely hurts.”

Check out the video and decide for yourself

Okay, now check out the video of the plays below (it’s a highlight package so it’s at the end)

So, what do you think?  Was it a fair call?  Was it only a fair call because of the play at the other end?  Was it home court advantage for the Pacers?

Was King James robbed or should he gave gotten special treatment as the league superstar?  Or was it because Granger is also an All-Star now?

Personally I think it’s because they called it at the other end.  There was definitely contact on both sides on both plays.  Lebron is so big and powerful that he never looks like he gets bumped, but if there was no contact as he says, then why he did fall down?