A game that came down to “what if?” could now get an opportunity to find the answer to that question, although a lot would change by then, if it indeed happens. After Houston Rockets lost to San Antonio Spurs by two points in the second period of Over Time, it all came down to “what if the dunk by James Harden had counted?”
Harden attempted a dunk with just under eight minutes to play in the fourth quarter. He went onto the open basket with a force that made the ball pop out of the basket after going in.
Referee James Capers later admitted that the basket should have counted, much to the disappointment of the Rockets.
However, according to Tim MacMahon of ESPN, the Rockets are confident that the NBA office will take suitable action on the incident, and that it could result in the Rockets being awarded the victory or the final 7:50 minutes to be replayed.
Weird sequence here. Harden converts a dunk, ball goes under and back through the net.
— Michael Shapiro (@mshap2) December 4, 2019
At the time Harden attempted the dunk, the Rockets were leading by 13 points. At a point before that they had a 22-point lead which the Spurs, quite admirably, were able to bring down.
The teams could not be separated at end of regulation time, and neither at the end of a period of Over Time, which called for more over time, much to a neutral’s delight.
James Harden tonight
11/38 FG (29%)
24/24 FT (100%)
4/20 3PT (20%)
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) December 4, 2019
Spurs eventually won the match 135-133 agasint a Rockets side whose star Guards registered a good haul of points, but with very little accuracy.
Russell Westbrook registered a triple double with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists but was only 7-of-30 from the field. Similarly, Harden’s tally of 50 points looks impressive but he was only 11-of-38 from the field and 4-of-20 from three-point range.
The duo of James Harden and Russell Westbrook dominated the ball, but it could be a problem going into the season as it was on Tuesday.