The Sixers proved all season that they didn't need any help hurting themselves at the end of games. Yet, in Wednesday's season-ending Game 5 loss to the Boston Celtics, it appears they got a nudge in the wrong direction from the officials.
Per the NBA's Last Two-Minute Report, the officials missed a pair of crucial calls at the end of the Sixers' 114-112 loss at TD Garden.
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The first came with 14.6 seconds left in the game. With the Sixers trailing 111-109, Joel Embiid backed down Aron Baynes and was hit on a layup attempt.
"Baynes makes contact to Embiid's arm that affects his shot attempt near the rim," the Last Two-Minute report stated.
The latter non-call came when the Sixers tried a heave on an inbounds pass with 2.4 ticks left on the clock. Ben Simmons' long pass to Robert Covington was intercepted by Boston guard Marcus Smart, who appeared to travel after catching the ball.
"Smart gathers the ball while landing on his right foot, after which he steps back with his left (establishing it as his pivot foot), then right," the Last Two-Minute report stated. "He then steps slightly with his left again before jumping to release the ball."
That call was extremely crucial as the Sixers would have had the ball for a side inbounds with 1.5 seconds remaining to score.
While no one is trying to pin the Sixers' loss solely on the officials, those are still a pair of huge mistakes in the final seconds of an elimination game.
That fact wasn't lost on a certain All-Star center.