Last month the Atlanta Hawks edged the Miami Heat in overtime, 117-111. However, the victory now doesn't count thanks to a screwup by the official scorer in Atlanta. With 3:42 left in the 4th quarter a foul was called on Miami's Udonis Haslem. However, the scorer recorded it as a foul on Shaquille O'Neal. So, when O'Neal committed a foul with 51.9 seconds left in overtime the scorer said he had six, not the five he actually committed, and had to leave the game.
The Heat appealed, and commissioner David Stern ruled that the final 51.9 seconds of the overtime must be replayed. Stern also fined the Hawks $50,000. Since the Hawks lost Friday night, their record went from 16-16 to 15-17 in one day. Miami also lost, so they "fall" from 8-28 to 8-28, at least until they finish the game March 8 when the teams next play in Atlanta.
Seeing as how another goof affected a game in Atlanta just last season -- on Nov. 24, 2006, the official scorer failed to credit Toronto's T.J. Ford with a basket that would have tied the game late; Toronto ended up losing 97-93 -- it's beyond strange that the Hawks aren't firing anyone on their stat crew. Memo to NBA teams -- keep your own score when you play in Atlanta. -- Joe Guckin