Several key calls go in Hawks’ favor in win over Cavaliers

There were incorrect calls on two key plays in the Hawks’ 126-125 overtime win over the Cavaliers on Sunday, according to the NBA. Both calls benefitted the Hawks as they mounted a rally and won in overtime after coming back from a 26-point fourth-quarter deficit.

The NBA issued its Last Two Minute report from the game Monday and found that a held ball should not have been called with 5.9 seconds left in regulation and that the Cavaliers’ Kyrie Irving should not have been called for an offensive foul with 12.3 seconds left in overtime.

According to the report, Kent Bazemore and Paul Millsap were both out of bounds when they tied up Irving to force a jump ball. The Cavaliers led 111-109 at the time of the play. Bazemore and Irving jumped, and Mike Muscala controlled the ball. Muscala passed to Paul Millsap, who made a 13-foot fade-away baseline jumper at the buzzer to force overtime.

The report also found that Millsap was not in legal guarding position and was moving laterally when Irving was called for an offensive foul on a drive to the basket. The Hawks led 123-120 at the time of the play. The Cavaliers fouled Tim Hardaway Jr. after the play and he made one of two free throws to give the Hawks a four-point lead.

The report also found an incorrect non-call as Bazemore fouled Irving on a jump shot with 31.8 seconds left in regulation. The Cavaliers led 109-105 at the time. Bazemore missed a 3-pointer on the Hawks’ ensuing possession.

Finally, the report found that Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue crossed midcourt to request a timeout with 25.6 seconds left in overtime, an incorrect non-call.

In another key play, the report found a correct call in that LeBron James did foul Millsap with 1:52 remaining in overtime. It was James’ sixth personal foul and set him to the bench for the remainder of the game. According to the report, “James (CLE) pushes Millsap (ATL) while he is airborne attempting to retrieve the rebound.” James said following the game that he did not believe he fouled Millsap.

In all the report found 14 correct calls and 25 correct non-calls. One of the correct non-calls came as the final buzzer sounded. Irving made a 36-foot running heave to bring the Cavaliers to within a point. Irving was guarded by Bazemore who nearly committed a foul on the play. According to the report, Bazemore (ATL) legally contests Irving’s (CLE) jump shot attempt. Any “high-five” contact after the release is considered incidental.” Had a foul been called, Irving would have had a chance to tie the game and force a second overtime.

The NBA reviews and issues a Last Two Minute report for games that are within five points at the two-minute mark and during overtime where applicable.

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