With the Kings leading 110-109 and 0.3 seconds remaining, Grizzlies forward Vince Carter threw the ball inbounds as Grizzlies center Marc Gasol screened two Sacramento players, leaving Courtney Lee wide-open for a reverse lay-up and the victory. The Kings lost after blowing a 26-point lead in the game.
Kings general manager Pete D'Alessandro told Comcast SportsNet California and that he “feels strongly" about the protest.
The team is protesting that Lee's game-winning shot should not have counted because it was made after the buzzer. It also appears that that Kings center Ryan Hollins, who was guarding Carter on the inbounds play, may have tipped the ball, which should have started the clock.
Under NBA protest rules, Memphis and Sacramento have to submit evidence that supports their positions on the play in question. The league will rule on the protest by Dec. 2.
The last time the NBA granted a protest was almost seven years ago in a game between the Atlanta Hawks and the Miami Heat on Dec. 19, 2007 in Atlanta. The Heat protested when Atlanta’s scorers table incorrectly disqualified Heat center Shaquille O'Neal after his sixth foul with less than one minute in the game and the Hawks leading by three points. It was actually only O’Neal’s fifth foul.
The league said that “Hawks were grossly negligent” for the scoring error and failed “to follow league-mandated scoring procedures and failed to respond effectively when the members of the statisticians' crew noticed the mistake.”
The NBA fined the Hawks $50,000 for violation of league rules. The last minute of the game was replayed the following March, with the Hawks winning 114-111 in overtime.
- Scooby Axson