Quick setup: Orlando was down a point with sixth-tenths of a second to play after Brook Lopez made two free throws. The clock is not supposed to start until the ball is touched, but while the ball flew through the air, the clock ticked down to zero and the buzzer sounded.
The errant shot clock prompted the officials to review the play, and once the NBA Replay Center in Secaucus, N.J. got a look at it, it was ruled that there would be a jump ball to decide who got the ball, not a replay of the final possession.
"Just common sense would tell me in that situation, if the clock started early, just redo the possession", Orlando coach Frank Vogel said. There were many moments the Magic lost that game.
"We feel cheated", he said. "Had the ball been touched by LAL prior to the expiration of the clock, it would have been considered a loose ball and the jump ball ruling would have been correct". "They [the NBA] have gotta change that rule, and I think they will". That's frustrating when things out of your hands hurt you.
"Nikola can't take seven shots a night for us". The Magic should have gotten a chance to replay that inbound pass with 0.6 seconds left. With 0.6 seconds left, that left the game completely over. They are now two games behind the seventh-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder and half a game behind the eighth-seeded Los AngelesClippers. A bench that has received a huge boost with the addition of high-scoring guard Isaiah Thomas in a trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers, is another. "It helped us get a win, kind of really saved us".
"I still don't even know how it ended", Thomas said, echoing a sentiment that was expressed throughout the Lakers' locker room. I have not even discussed it, to be honest with you, with [Magic President of Basketball Operations] Jeff Weltman. That (stinks) for the Magic. "Stop looking at the standings and just win games". And Orlando was deservedly frustrated with how the game ended. His sore knee would have prevented him from playing out the rest of his second 10-day contract, so the Magic made the move.
Lakers: They wore their powder-blue Minneapolis Lakers throwback uniforms. "Our offense is interchangeable in a sense so (the key is) just knowing where you've got to be". The 7-foot Lopez somehow didn't get a rebound in 35 minutes of play.
Kyle Kuzma had 20 points and 10 rebounds in one of his best games of 2018. He appeared to hit the rookie wall in January.
The one good thing (maybe) for the NBA: This game involved a lottery team (Orlando) and a likely lottery team (LA), so there's little chance of the playoff races being affected.Then again, the Magic (20-45) "gained" a game in the lottery standings, so the teams around them might not be too happy. The Magic routed the Lakers 127-105 at Amway Center, even without Gordon in the lineup.
On Thursday, in its Last Two-Minute Report, the National Basketball Association disclosed that one of the game referees had started the clock accidently. Meanwhile, the Nuggets stay at home to host the Sacramento Kings on Sunday.
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