Blog Entry

Video: Paul Pierce game winner... kind of

Posted on: December 15, 2010 10:19 pm
Edited on: December 16, 2010 10:40 am
Posted by Matt Moore

UPDATE 10:41 p.m. EST:
A league spokesman for the NBA informs that there was no "trigger" that occurred which would allow a review of Pierce's game winner, which meant that it stood as called. So that explains that. We'll have more on the trigger rules later.

UPDATE 11:22 p.m. EST: For what it's worth, a New York  (yes, I hear you Celtics fans) media producer says he timed Amar'e Stoudemire's shot and it came out to .68 seconds . He claims that Pierce's shot was through at .7 as well.

It may not be a rivalry yet, but it's well on its way.

Paul Pierce nailed the game winner over the outstretched arms of Amar'e Stoudemire with .4 seconds left to give the Celtics their run-of-the-mill tough, relentless win 118-116. It was Paul Pierce, coming off a Ray Allen screen, forcing the Knicks to switch, getting Pierce with space on the right elbow, his sweet spot, against Amar'e Stoudemire (who was a beast from the first quarter on). Pierce pushed a little deeper than his favorite spot at the elbow, to the right wing, rose, fired, and...

Kaboom. Knicks lose. A heartbreaker, but that's what the Celtics do. With only .4 left on the clock, the Knicks got the ball to Amar'e Stoudemire for a prayer three. It was, amazingly, good, but after the buzzer. 


Go back to the Pierce shot. When exactly did that ball go all the way through the net, as the NBA rulebook says it must for it to count?

That would be .6. At least. You might be able to make the argument that it landed at .8.

And if you're interested in the clock on the shot clock? Courtesy of @TheYankeeU on Twitter. 

Couple things:
  • It is well within Boston fans' right to contest that Amar'e still wouldn't have gotten the shot off in time. Trying to match up the times would be nearly impossible, but it was firmly cradled in his hand when the buzzer sounded. Would another.2 to .4 matter?
  • It's also easy to make the argument that Boston might have defended differently (less concern about the lob) with .6 or .8 versus .04. Everything changes with that time differential. There's something in here about chaos theory and parallel universes, but we don't want to go there. 
  • The Knicks still very much had every chance to win this game and Boston took it from them.
  • It's also possible this was a production issue with the network carrying the game, but we're willing to give them the benefit of the doubt here. 
But it is a pretty interesting development that at home, in a situation where review is pretty much required, it would certainly appear as if things were amiss in Madison Square Garden.

Great win for Boston, but this shows just how tough of a loss it was for New York. 

Since: Sep 11, 2007
Posted on: December 15, 2010 11:21 pm

Video: Paul Pierce game winner... kind of

my instinct was that there was a mistake.  i actually put this on D'antoni, he called a TO and had time to talk to the officials about reviewing it to put time back on the clock.  it was pretty clear even seeing it live that too much time went off.  if they don't auto-replay it, you don't have anything to lose by bringing it up

Since: Jun 23, 2010
Posted on: December 15, 2010 11:18 pm

Video: Paul Pierce game winner... kind of

Hey there, Casey, thanks for posting. 
From the NBA official rulebook: 
(emphasis ours)
Section V-Stoppage of Timing Devices 
a. The timing devices shall be stopped whenever the official's whistle sounds indicating one of the following: 
(1) A personal or technical foul. 
(2) A jump ball. 
(3) A floor violation. 
(4) An unusual delay. 
(5) A suspension-of-play for any other emergency (no substitutions are permitted.) 
(6) A regular or 20-second timeout. 
b. The timing devices shall be stopped: 
(1) During the last minute of the first, second and third periods following a successful field goal attempt. 
(2)During the last two minutes of regulation play and/or overtime(s) following a successful field goal attempt. 
c. Officials may not use official time to permit a player to change or repair equipment.

Thanks for reading!

Since: Dec 15, 2010
Posted on: December 15, 2010 11:10 pm

Video: Paul Pierce game winner... kind of

Small problem. I'm fairly certain the clock stops when a team calls a timeout, not when the ball goes through the basket. Since, according to the tape, it went through at 0.6, time would have been called at some point after that. Possibly 0.2 seconds?

Since: Dec 15, 2010
Posted on: December 15, 2010 11:07 pm

Video: Paul Pierce game winner... kind of

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