The NBA announced Thursday that its referees missed a foul call on a controversial play that resulted in Lakers All-Star guard Kobe Bryant suffering a sprained ankle while being defended by Hawks guard Dahntay Jones on Wednesday night.
With 4.9 seconds remaining in the Atlanta Hawks’ 96-92 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on March 13, the Lakers’ Kobe Bryant attempted a jump shot over the Hawks’ Dahntay Jones. After review at the league office, video replay confirmed that referees missed a foul call on Jones as he challenged Bryant’s shot and did not give him the opportunity to land cleanly back on the floor. Bryant should have been granted two free throws.
The NBA’s ruling doesn’t impact the result of Wednesday night’s game and it doesn’t carry with it any punishment for Jones, but it does offer a measure of vindication for Bryant, who is out “indefinitely” with a “severely” sprained left ankle. He was adamant that Jones should have been called for a foul on the play for sliding underneath him after the shot attempt.