Thunder notebook: NBA says goaltending call was incorrect

Kevin Durant's basket with six seconds remaining in regulation Monday at Portland should not have counted. Durant was awarded two points when an official ruled that a blocked shot by LaMarcus Aldridge was goaltending.
by Darnell Mayberry Published: February 7, 2012
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The NBA announced Tuesday that Kevin Durant's basket with six seconds remaining in regulation Monday at Portland should not have counted. Durant was awarded two points when an official ruled that a blocked shot by LaMarcus Aldridge was goaltending.

“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,” the statement read. “Therefore, this should have been ruled a good block and goaltending was the incorrect call.”

The statement went on to clarify that referees are prohibited from using instant replay on goaltending calls, as determined by the NBA's Competition Committee.

WARRIORS COACH CALLS WESTBROOK ‘SPECIAL'

Golden State Warriors coach Mark Jackson, who ranks third on the NBA's all-time assists lists with 10,334, described Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook in one word before Tuesday night's game — special.

“He has the stuff that I dreamed about having,” Jackson said. “He's an incredible athlete, as good an athlete as this league has ever seen at the point guard position.”

Jackson went on to say Westbrook was “exceptional” and called him explosive.

“He's always in attack mode,” Jackson said. “He's a guy that stays in the gym and is not satisfied with where he is but determined to leave this game having left an impact. And it's refreshing to see young players with his mentality and his approach and his professionalism.”

CALM IN THE CLUTCH

With a 111-107 overtime win at Portland on Monday night, Oklahoma City improved to 5-1 in games decided by four points or less. Against the Blazers, the Thunder once again showed its ability to be mentally tough and overcome adversity to notch a hard-fought victory.

The Thunder forced overtime after overcoming an 18-6 fourth-quarter run the Blazers used take a six-point lead in the final 2 1/2 minutes of regulation. OKC then outscored Portland 8-4 in the overtime session, holding the Blazers to 1-for-9 shooting in the final five minutes.

“We were able to just keep battling,” said Nick Collison. “We've been pretty resilient these last few years, and it was another game where we just kept playing and good things happened for us.”


by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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