By Ken Berger
NBA officials are looking at several controversial calls in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals as they sift through the fallout from the Pacers' 99-92 victory on Tuesday night, league sources told CBSSports.com.
The most obvious missed call was a blown 24-second call against the Pacers by crew chief Joe Crawford with 8:26 left in the third quarter. Replays showed that Roy Hibbert's attempt hit the rim, which should've resulted in the shot clock resetting. The Pacers were leading 81-72 at the time, and Miami subsequently went on an 11-2 run to tie the game at 83-83.
At that point, Dwyane Wade drove for a transition layup and the basket counted on a goaltending call against Paul George. Wade was fouled by David West on the play and converted a three-point play to give Miami an 86-83 lead with 5:57 left. But league officials are looking at whether West coming down across Wade's body and hitting him in the head warrants a flagrant upgrade, sources said.
On the play that resulted in LeBron James' sixth foul, an illegal screen against Lance Stephenson with 56 seconds left, the league's preliminary review substantiates the call. James stuck his left leg outside his stance to impede Stephenson's movement around the screen.
But on an earlier foul called on James when George drove for a layup and converted a three-point play with 5:38 remaining, James appeared on replay review to have a point in his postgame assertion that he established position on the baseline and went straight up for a legal defensive play. It was a borderline play that could have gone either way, made possible only by James' ability to close quickly on George from the opposite foul line.
It is not clear whether James will be fined for criticizing the officials after the game. He was called for four fouls in the fourth quarter and fouled out for only the second time in his playoff career.
"I believe I was straight up-and-down on Paul George's drive -- the and-one," James said.
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Edited by LALakersFan4Life, May 29, 2013 - 10:13 AM.