The Mad Ants have filed an official protest of their opening-game loss at Texas and now the ball's in the NBA Development League's court.
Chances don't seem strong of the protest being granted, based on NBA history.
Only two protests have been granted by the NBA since 1982. The D-League, which is operated under the NBA's guidance, is just as reluctant to change outcomes based on protests. However, the last protests granted by the NBA or the D-League were due to a scorekeepers' errors, which is the heart of this protest.
“We'll make our best case,” Mad Ants president Jeff Potter said.
The protest stems from the finish of the Mad Ants' 100-99 loss to the Texas Legends on Friday in Frisco, Texas.
The Mad Ants' Olek Czyz pulled down a rebound after a missed Texas shot with the score 99-99 and the Ants called timeout. The officials put the clock at 0.9 seconds remaining.
“The scorer's table said we had two timeouts, we used one of them and got Ron a shot and tied it at 99-99,” Ants coach Conner Henry said. “They pushed it down, we made a stop and rebounded the ball and called our last timeout.”
Texas' coaching staff argued that the Ants did not have any timeouts left, but officials checked with the scorer's table and initially determined they did, Henry said.
“Their assistant coaches were hammering their official scorer's table and got them to all of a sudden change their collective minds and realize maybe they had made a mistake,” Henry said.
Officials assessed the Ants a technical foul for calling timeout when they had none, and Texas won on the subsequent free throw.
The Ants should have been charged a timeout when play was stopped for an injury to Ramon Harris, but were not assessed the timeout by the official book. The Ants checked several times about the number of timeouts remaining long before the final play, Henry said.
Potter said he expects a decision to be made by D-League president Dan Reed within the next 10-12 days.
“We'll abide by what they say,” Potter said.
The D-League granted a protest filed by the Utah Flash from a 2008 game in which a player was erroneously disqualified for six fouls when he should have had five. The NBA made a similar decision from a December 2007 game when Miami's Shaquille O'Neal was erroneously disqualified when he had only five fouls. Both games were replayed from the time the error occurred.
The Mad Ants (0-2) will play their home opener against Maine at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Memorial Coliseum.