I really enjoy analyzing the final minutes of the ’16 NBA Finals. There are just so many ins and outs about what occurred that allowed the Cavs to finally win their coveted championship for Cleveland in dramatic fashion.
Of course, we all remember LeBron James’ block dubbed “The Block” and Kyrie Irving’s three-pointer a new “The Shot” (won’t mention the previous one). There’s even Kevin Love’s defense titled “The Stop.”
Those are the three big moments that are always referenced…but. There’s something else.
Let’s set the scene for you.
-Just about three minutes to go in Game 7 tied at 89 between the Cavs and Warriors at Oracle Arena.
-LeBron James, with just about five to shoot on the shot clock, drives down the lane and is contested by the Warriors SF Andre Iguodala.
-From the naked eye of a fan, it looks like a very solid block and a great play down the stretch that could help the Warriors win the game. They have the ball after Draymond Green grabs the rebound and gives it to Steph Curry under three to go and a chance to go up.
Not. So. Fast.
It’s a clear, clear, clear FOUL! Blow the whistle, haha!
James should’ve been shooting two at the line with just about three minutes left.
LeBron is a career 73.5% foul shooter.
For the playoffs? 74%
For The Finals? 73.1%.
That percentage is solid, but certainly not elite. That would be over 80% for sure. Ironically, Stephen Curry has the highest career free-throw percentage, at 90.9 percent in NBA History.
Of course, there is no way of knowing if James makes both, splits the pair or bricks them both.
What we do know is because of that no-call, what ended up happening is the Cavs went on the win the game 93-89 and are the champs for 2016.
It’s never good when the refs decide a game. This article isn’t to suggest that but just to point out the crucial missed call and is more of a “what if?” type of idea to think about during your free time.
I analyze other points like JR Smith’s defense that led to “The Block” You can read that article by clicking HERE. It’s always fun in sports to see what could’ve been if this or that never happened. This was arguably the biggest game in Cleveland Sports History!
To the NBA Refs:
Thanks for your terrible no-call for making everything end up working out the way it did. Next time though? Maybe call the foul when there is CLEAR hand-to-hand contact on a drive to the lane and a layup is missed because of it.
Isn’t that what they pay you for?