NBA: Illegal Raptors screen freed Kyle Lowry for late 3-pointer in win over Pelicans

1 Comment

Kyle Lowry hit the game-winning jumper in overtime of the Raptors’ 108-106 win over the Pelicans on Tuesday — an unimpeachably great play by the Toronto star.

But two earlier plays involving Lowry drew scrutiny in the NBA’s Last Two Minute Report.

Perhaps, the Raptors would have just won in regulation with correct officiating down the stretch. But if the game still would’ve reached overtime — a perfectly reasonable conclusion — Toronto benefited from an even bigger missed call in the extra period.

The game remained tied at 96 for the final two minutes of the fourth quarter, but the Raptors were robbed of a possession in that span. After blocking Lowry’s shot, Anthony Davis saved the ball from going out of bounds with a pass directly to Lowry. But Lowry was called for a foul — in error, according to the league:

Lowry (TOR) makes marginal contact with Davis (NOP) that does not affect his ability to retrieve the basketball.

The Raptors weren’t the penalty, so New Orleans just got the ball, though it should have gone to Toronto with a fresh shot clock.

But the Pelicans didn’t score again in regulation anyway, and the Raptors turned the ball over on both their remaining fourth-quarter possessions..

That took the game to overtime, where Lowry hit a 3-pointer — after coming around an illegal pick by Patrick Patterson on E'Twaun Moore with two minutes left, per the NBA:

Patterson (TOR) sets the screen on Moore (NOP) and delivers the contact.

A correct call would’ve ended the Raptors possession before Lowry hit the 3-pointer. Instead, Toronto used those three points en route to its two-point win.