Hassan Whiteside’s game-winning tip-in against Detroit on Tuesday, giving the Heat its first regular-season buzzer victory in seven years, should never have happened, according to an NBA review of officiating calls in the game.
In its daily review of officiating calls in the final two minutes of all games, the league ruled that two fouls should have been called against the Heat on its frenetic final possession.
The NBA said Rodney McGruder should have been called for a foul with 5.4 seconds left when he “dislodged” Pistons guard Ish Smith “during rebounding.”
The league said Whiteside should have been called for a foul with 5.0 seconds left, claiming he “grabbed and pulled” Pistons center Andre Drummond’s “jersey, affecting his ability to retrieve the rebound.”
The NBA said the Heat should have been the beneficiary of two non-calls earlier in the final two minutes, claiming that Drummond committed a three-second violation with 1:38 left and that Detroit’s Aron Baynes should have been called for a foul against James Johnson with 31 seconds left.
Alas, it’s all irrelevant because the NBA does not overturn game results.
According to Elias, Miami hadn’t hit a game-winning field goal at the buzzer in the regular season since Wade did it against the Bulls on March 9, 2009. The Heat’s streak of 650 games without a buzzer-beating win was the longest by any NBA team since the Rockets had a 676-game drought from 2005 to 2013. LeBron James hit a basket at the buzzer for the Heat in the 2013 Eastern Conference Finals against Indiana.
The NBA releases the two-minute report in an attempt for transparency.