The Dallas Mavericks will file a protest of their 127-125 loss to the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday night in Dallas, team governor Mark Cuban told ESPN.
The protest is due to an uncontested dunk by Warriors center Kevon Looney after a timeout with 1:54 remaining in the third quarter. The Mavericks believed they had possession of the ball, which Cuban attributed to an officiating error.
Cuban tweeted his account of the incident Wednesday night, saying the refs had initially said it was Mavs ball. A timeout was then called.
“During the time out the official changed the call and never told us,” Cuban said in his tweet. “Then when they saw us line up as if it were our ball, he just gave the ball to the warriors. Never said a word to us They got an easy basketball. Crazy that it would matter in a 2 point game.”
Cuban went on to call it the “worst officiating non call mistake possibly in the history of the NBA.”
“All they had to do was tell us and they didn’t,” he wrote in his tweet.
In a pool report afterward, crew chief Sean Wright disputed Cuban’s account, saying that the refs had in fact originally signaled it was Golden State’s ball.
“There is a second signal, but that signal is for a mandatory timeout that was due to the Mavs,” Wright said.
According to the NBA constitution, Cuban must file his protest in writing within the next 48 hours. After commissioner Adam Silver receives the protest, the Warriors will be notified and each team will have five days to file evidence to support its case.
Silver will make a ruling on the case within five days after receiving the evidence. Cuban’s protest must also be accompanied by a protest fee of $10,000, which will be refunded if the protest prevails or forfeited if it doesn’t.
The most recent protest in the NBA was also filed by the Mavericks, for their game against the Hawks on Feb. 22, 2020. The Mavs lost the protest.
The last successful protest in the NBA came in January 2008.
Wednesday’s loss dropped Dallas to 36-37, ninth in the Western Conference standings. The Mavs would have moved ahead of the Warriors, who are now 38-36, into sixth place with a win.
(With Inputs from ESPN)
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