A Few Of Our Favorite Angry Reactions To The Dwyane Wade-Rajon Rondo No-Call
The Heat took a 2-0 Eastern Conference Finals lead over the Celtics last night with a 115-111 overtime win, but not unlike the draft lottery earlier in the night, the game ended amid controversy. And the lion's share of that controversy centered around one call (or more accurately, lack thereof) during overtime, with the game tied at 105.
Rajon Rondo - who played the game of his life, playing all 53 minutes and scoring a career-high 44 points along with eight rebounds, 10 assists, and three steals - drove to the basket. Dwyane Wade got a hand in his face. Rondo contended that Wade got a hand on his face, but no call was made. ESPN's announcing team, upon looking at replays, thought it was a huge missed call. Rondo certainly thought it was a huge missed call. And you can decide for yourself whether you think it was a huge missed call with the video below, by our CJ Fogler:
Now... are we crazy, or is that not nearly as clear-cut as, say, Jeff Van Gundy made it out to be? Was there some contact? There's a good chance there was. But was it the obvious smack across the face everyone seemed to think it was at the time? Not even close. Even the screencap above (which gives the best view, we think) isn't conclusive - looking at the replay multiple times, Rondo might have juuuuuust ducked under Wade's arm. It's also very possible Wade glanced Rondo's nose - but just know that if this call had gone the other way, Heat fans would have had a case that they got screwed.
But it didn't go the other way, and there's no question that the no-call there changed the overtime. The game was tied, and instead of the Celtics getting free throws (once again, we'll add we're not 100 percent sure they deserved free throws, though this angle makes it look worse), the Heat got a basket down at the other end. This angered many people. Let's look at a few of those outraged reactions, shall we? We'll start with someone you'd expect to react in said outraged manner: Bill Simmons.
You can't win 5 against 8. This game is one of the all-time jokes. I am so disgusted by this game and the league as a whole.
— Bill Simmons (@sportsguy33) May 31, 2012
But he wasn't alone, of course. HopHopWired's Kazeem Famuyide:
The NBA is worse than the WWE. I'm waiting for David Stern to run on the court and call the game while Rondo is reversing the sharpshooter
— Kazeem Famuyide (@RealLifeKaz) May 31, 2012
Celtics fan who thinks your team got screwed (i.e., Celtics fan)? Worry not, for Dick Vitale is on your side:
My twit fam upset with zebras late in Celtics - Heat game - have legit gripe on no call on Wade vs Rondo - a big miss as Rondo WAS FOULED!
— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) May 31, 2012
Of course, connecting the Rondo no-call to the lottery result was a common theme:
After seeing that no call on Rondo I am convinced the NBA is rigged. That was the game changer. And the NBA owned Hornets got the #1 pick.
— Jimmy Swoll (@JimmyLawless) May 31, 2012
And if you're wondering whether Falcons receiver Roddy White was happy with the no-call, he was certainly not:
That's nba officiating for you right there rondo gets fouled and no call but touch lebron and it's a foul
— Roddy White (@roddywhiteTV) May 31, 2012
There were many, many other such reactions, obviously - as well as a few who saw it more like we did. It doesn't matter now, though: it's over, and the Heat are two wins away from the NBA Finals. And the Heat are better. Even if Rondo had gotten the call, and even if he had hit those free throws, and even if that had led to a Celtics win last night, we bet the Heat still would have won this series. Do we blame Celtics fans for being upset? Not at all, but after many, many replay viewings, we're also not sure they got jobbed last night like they think they did.
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