Skip to content

League admits Aldridge goaltend call on Durant was wrong

Feb 7, 2012, 4:42 PM EDT

Portland should have had the win.

Portland’s LaMarcus Aldridge looked like he’d made the defensive play of the game, blocking a Kevin Durant layup on the last play of regulation, but then Scott Foster, the referee out near half court, called goaltending. Tie game, 103-103, and the Thunder went on to win in overtime.

Tuesday the league admitted the wrong call was made.

With six seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, the Blazers’ LaMarcus Aldridge was called for goaltending on a shot attempted by the Thunder’s Kevin Durant. With the benefit of slow motion replay following the game, it has been determined that Aldridge made contact with the ball just before the ball hit the backboard. Therefore, this should have been ruled a good block and goaltending was the incorrect call. (As determined by the NBA’s Competition Committee, referees may not use instant replay on goaltending calls.)

Goaltending calls are not reviewable because while the ones off the backboard can be clear via replay a more standard block is considered a judgment call at the time that should stand.

I can hear my high school coach now talking to Blazers fans — you didn’t lose the game because of one bad call, you lost it because of that 6-0 run late that let Oklahoma City tie the game up, or the late 8-0 run you gave up before the half, or the run that let the Thunder take a 12-point lead in the fourth. His message was very coach-like — if you don’t want to risk bad calls at the end of the game, play better earlier and take it out of the refs’ hands.

Still, Portland should have won this game. Tough break.

  1. cakemixa - Feb 7, 2012 at 4:59 PM

    Gotta love the NBA and it’s treatment of “superstar players”. Would the goaltend have even been called if Joe Scrub was taking the shot instead of Kevin Durant?

    • Justin - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:01 PM

      Depend on if it was superstar Dwight Howard or Lebron James blocking it.

  2. Justin - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:03 PM

    Is it just me or does it seem like there has been an inflation of incorrect goal tending calls this year?

  3. jedicurt - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:15 PM

    Portland POTENTIALLY would have won…..

    even if it had been called a block, James Harden came up with the rebound and there would have been time for a shot. so we really don’t know if Portland would have won…. what if makes a quick one from behind the arc and no time is left on the clock (which is entirely possible for a player like Harden)…. perhaps OKC still wins and there would have been no overtime

  4. sylpkt - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    The Thunder still would have the ball with about 6 seconds left. Harden tracked it down after the block/goal-tend.

  5. juanandonly24 - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:17 PM

    That call was stupid, but not stupider than the fact that both McMillan and Aldridge called for the play to be reviewed and they refused to do so.

    • goforthanddie - Feb 7, 2012 at 5:38 PM

      “Goaltending calls are not reviewable because while the ones off the backboard can be clear via replay a more standard block is considered a judgment call at the time that should stand.”

      Reading makes life fun, try it some time.

  6. savvybynature - Feb 7, 2012 at 6:50 PM

    It looked like a goaltending in real time because the ball comes off the backboard at an odd trajectory. Which is exactly why refs shouldn’t make those kinds of calls unless they are in position. The ref that made the call was almost at half court! No way he should have made the call of the game from that spot on the floor. I hope it’s safe to assume that when the league feels a call is egregiously bad enough to publicly admit the mistake that they also sit the ref down and have a chat with him.

    • natsthecat - Feb 8, 2012 at 3:10 PM

      I’d love to have the league do just a bit more than sit down and have a chat with Foster….the guy who had tight relationship with Donaghy…the EX NBA FELON.

  7. nightrain42 - Feb 7, 2012 at 8:03 PM

    Agree 1 play doesn’t lose a game….but why do u hve replay then?

  8. teachmehowtostasche - Feb 9, 2012 at 3:57 AM

    How can you say the Trial Blazers should have won?? Clearly James Harden gets the ball back with around 3-4 seconds.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. D. Rose (2380)
  2. K. Irving (1928)
  3. A. Davis (1752)
  4. L. James (1605)
  5. K. Durant (1572)
  1. K. Bryant (1554)
  2. R. Rubio (1391)
  3. T. Thompson (1346)
  4. A. Aminu (1318)
  5. M. Leonard (1280)