The Oklahoma City Thunder have found themselves in some crazy postseason controversy.
The latest was the no-call late in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals against the Warriors involving Russell Westbrook and what appeared to be a travel violation. It wasn't the sole reason OKC won 108-102 for the upset victory in Game 1, but it certainly helped create a bit of distance in the final 20 seconds.
Whether it's everything that happened at the end of Game 2 against the San Antonio Spurs or a no-call when Kawhi Leonard was trying to foul Westbrook in Game 5, the Thunder seem to be getting more late calls or officiating mistakes to go their way than against them.
On Monday, Andre Iguodala scored at the rim to cut the Thunder lead to three points with just under 23 seconds left in the game. Westbrook inbounded the ball to Kevin Durant, who then sent a pass right back to him. Westbrook dribbled up the floor against the defense of Klay Thompson, and then tried to stop on a dime after he passed half court to call a timeout with the Thunder in danger of being trapped into a turnover. The problem, though, is he stopped on several dimes.
Here's a zoomed-in, slow-motion shot of the no-call travel that had Steve Kerr beside himself:
Westbrook takes three steps for sure. It's a little tough to tell when that first step happens on the gather from the dribble, which you're allowed in the NBA, so it may have even been four steps on the travel and still no call. He definitely slid that foot as he tried to come to a complete stop, and you can see Kerr saying Westbrook received more steps than should be allowed. Maybe you can make a case that Thompson was riding him a bit as he dribbled up the floor, but not sure it can be anything close to a foul, which would be the only thing that justifies the no-call.
Of course, it doesn't help matters when a senior replay official says a travel should have been called on Westbrook:
Joe Borgia, Sr VP Replay/Ref operations, just told us Westbrook should have been called for a travel when he dragged foot calling time.— Matt Winer (@matt_winer) May 17, 2016
And now for the 15 most exciting words in sports: We'll have to wait for the Last Two-Minute report tomorrow for the official word.