Lonzo Ball made a terrible decision late in Thursday’s game against the Oklahoma City Thunder.
With the Los Angeles Lakers leading 122-119 in the final seconds or regulation, Ball decided to foul one of the worst 3-point shooters in NBA history.
Russell Westbrook drove the sideline, looking to set up for a game-tying 3-point attempt. Ball intentionally fouled Westbrook, hoping to get him on the floor before the shot and prevent OKC from getting a look from distance.
Westbrook gets three free throws
But Westbrook pulled up as soon as Ball reached in and got the call in the act of shooting, leading to three free throws.
Westrook hits three free throws
Of course, Westbrook hit them all, forcing overtime.
Westbrook is a 30.6 percent career 3-point shooter. He’s an all-time great and a former MVP, but he launches 3-pointers like he’s good at them. And he’s not. You let him take that shot every time.
The Lakers went on to a 138-128 win in overtime, bailing Ball out for his lack of critical thinking in crunch time. To Ball’s credit, he hit a pair huge 3-pointers in overtime en route to an 18-point, 10-assist, 6-rebound night.
LeBron with an interesting take on the call
But even more compelling than Ball’s decision was LeBron James’ Twitter response while watching from home with a groin injury. He had the gall to complain about the foul being called in the act of shooting. And he directed his complaint at NBA officials.
So what really is “in the shooting motion” rule?!?!? Asking for a friend @OfficialNBARefs 🤔
— LeBron James (@KingJames) January 18, 2019
The foul was a close call that more times that not is going to be called a shooting foul in the NBA. It’s going to be called a shooting foul 100 percent of the time James is in the same situation.
Maybe he should think twice when complaining about another star getting calls. That’s not a play that’s in his best interest in the long run.
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