We’ll take a brief detour from dissecting the Kendrick Perkins trade this afternoon to bring you a fairly eyeopening occurrence from last night’s contest in Denver between the Celtics and Nuggets.
I watched the game with my buddy JRo, keeping an eye on the action, while the two of us tried to make the case for the Perkins deal. Things got a little bit fishy though with about five minutes remaining in the third quarter as the two of us were perplexed by a particular play sequence. I won’t spoil the surprise for you, we’ll just play a little game called, what’s wrong with this picture?
If you had the shot clock operator fell asleep here as your answer, that’d be correct! As you can see, once Paul Pierce hits a driving layup with 14 seconds left on the shot clock and the ball changes possession, something that normally, you know, causes the shot clock to reset. Not in this game though. A simple, yet crucial mistake. Someone forgot to hit a button. It happens.
But it’s worse than that…..far worse. Not only did the operator fail to do their job, all three officials on the floor (Violet Palmer, Rodney Mott, Bob Delaney) did not notice this failure and proceeded to allow a possession to occur for the Nuggets that began with literally 12 seconds on the shot clock. 12 whole seconds!
The Nuggets start the possession as usual, with Ty Lawson pushing the ball up the floor before making a couple passes around the perimeter. Eventually the ball gets down low to a clearly flustered Kenyon Martin, who chucks up a brick when he realizes how the shot clock is down to one second already. He is understandably surprised since “24 seconds” went about twice as fast as any human being with a concept of time would believe it would go.
After the shot, a few Nuggets wave up their arms in protest, but there is no stoppage as the C’s race back down the floor in transition. I’m shocked quite honestly the Nuggets and their coaches didn’t make a huge deal about this, but it literally appears almost everyone in the arena who could do something about it didn’t notice it. And once the ball changed possession, I’m not sure there was much that could be done anyway.
For now anyway, let’s just be happy this wasn’t a crucial possession in a game with significant meaning. Let’s also try to get these referees a little more focused on their perception of time as well please.