Damian Lillard dropped 36 points on the Nets Monday night, but one of those points was the easiest he’ll ever get.
During the third quarter, Lillard stepped inside the arc around Deron Williams and hit a mid-range jumper, cutting the Nets lead to 62-42. But referee Bennie Adams, standing right next to the play, raised his hands in the universal ref “three-point” symbol, and Lillard was given three points on the shot, despite standing at least three feet inside the arc. 62-43
As Nets play-by-play king Ian Eagle noted on the broadcast, the officials took too long before reviewing the three, and once an extra stoppage in play passed there was no going back. Lillard was assessed a 25-foot three-pointer in the play-by-play and shot chart:
It’s hard to know what Adams was thinking. My guess is that he just saw the arc of the free throw circle inside Lillard’s feet and didn’t think twice about what he was looking at. Or maybe it’s a massive conspiracy, so when Lillard ties Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record, he’ll sneakily break it.
The Nets didn’t have much trouble handling the Blazers, winning 106-96 and leading by double digits for most of the second half. But if the game was any closer, that bad call could’ve made a big difference.
(h/t NBA Reddit)