Dwyane Wade was visibly incensed with officials for not calling a foul for him on the final play of the Miami Heat's 90-88 game five first-round playoff loss at home to the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday and it now appears he was wrong.
The NBA has released its final two-minute report from the game and confirmed that the referees made the correct decision in not awarding a foul to Wade as he was challenged at the basket by Cody Zeller and Courtney Lee with just 2.6 seconds left.
Since March 2015, the NBA has reviewed officiating in the final two minutes of close games. The league's "Last Two Minute Report" has provided a public report card on everything that happens in the final two minutes of games within five points, with the aim of clearing up any controversial decisions.
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The no-call allowed the Hornets to close out the game and take a 3-2 lead into game six which takes place tonight in Charlotte, leaving the Heat in a perilous position after squandering a 2-0 advantage.
A statement from the league said: "Zeller (CHA) comes towards Wade (MIA) from across the restricted area, planting his foot and jumping vertically to defend Wade’s shot.
"Zeller absorbs contact when it occurs and, while his arms are not completely vertical, multiple angles confirm they do not make contact with Wade. Therefore, Zeller maintains a legal guarding position as he attempts to defend the shot."
Numerous arguments have surfaced that while Zeller may have been in a vertical position to challenge Wade's drive to the basket, a foul was committed by Lee. But the league has cleared that up too.
They said: "Lee (CHA) makes contact with the ball during Wade’s (MIA) upward shooting motion, which makes his subsequent, minor arm contact with Wade incidental. Lee then makes contact with Wade’s arm again at about 00:04.9, however, Wade has already lost possession of the ball."
The game may be over, and debating the issue after the fact will not change anything, but the no-call has still divided opinions and is certainly the most contentious refereeing decision of the opening round so far.
One man who disagrees with the NBA's interpretation, apart from Wade and the Miami Heat, is former NBA executive vice president Stu Jackson who tweeted the following:
Now that the league has made its statement and backed its officials in this instance, the matter should be a closed case and Wade and his Heat teammates must come out with a sense of urgency in game six to avoid elimination.
Regardless of the no-call, other than Wade, the rest of the team didn't shoot the ball well and if the likes of Luol Deng (4-of-12) and Goran Dragic (5-15) had made an extra basket each, the Heat would've won the ball game.
Erik Spoelstra will need the production from his role players that he got in the first two games where they had multiple players in double digits.
The South Beach outfit was tipped by many to be the main threat to the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference and now is the time to show what they're made of.