Report: Rockets File Protest of Loss to Spurs Over Harden Dunk Call

Michael Shapiro

The Rockets officially filed a protest on Friday of their 135-133 loss to the Spurs, according to The New York Times' Marc Stein. 

Houston protested Tuesday's game after officials in San Antonio did not allow a James Harden dunk attempt in the fourth quarter. Harden dunked the ball through the net, but was not given two points as the ball came back through the net and over the rim. The play was not reviewed, and Rockets head coach Mike D'Antoni was not awarded a challenge. 

D'Antoni discussed his inability to challenge postgame. 

"I heard that they said the ball hit James and went back through, so it was a goaltend on [Harden]. I challenged that, and I didn't get a response," D'Antoni told reporters.  "Then another guy said it wasn't a goaltend. It went out of bounds on us. And I said, 'Well, I challenge that.' Can't do that. You know, I don't know, to answer your question. I've got nothing. I can't tell you."

The Rockets sent the commissioner's office relevant evidence for its protest as it argues the officials made a "misapplication of rules." NBA commissioner Adam Silver will now have five days to make his decision on a potential replay. 

Harden and Co. hope to replay the final 7:50 of regulation that occured after Harden's missed dunk. The Rockets will be up 15 points to start the contest if they are granted a replay of Tuesday's loss. 

Houston surrendered its double-digit lead after Harden's missed dunk, with the two-time scoring champion failing to score on potential game winners at the end of overtime and double overtime.

The last replayed NBA game came in 2008 when the Hawks and Heat faced off for the final 51 seconds of regulation after a misassigned foul call.

The Rockets fell to 13–7 with Tuesday's loss. They entered Thursday's matchup with the Raptors fifth in the Western Conference. 

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