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sponsored03 / Mar 21, 2011 / 10:30 am

Blake Griffin and the Amazing Dunk That Wasn’t

If you watched this live, it was one of those slow-developing plays where you could see what’s coming … and when it really started to unfold, you found yourself unconsciously getting up out of your seat in anticipation of one of the greatest dunks you were ever going to see. The setup was perfect – a hotly contested game, a frustrated Blake Griffin, and the Clips running a poorly-defended pick-and-roll with Blake charging down the lane.

The only thing standing in his way? 6-11 Marcin Gortat valiantly stepping up to take a charge/gamble with his life. Gortat got position, took the charge, and the refs hit Griffin with his sixth foul and then a technical after his protest saw him taking the ball and sprinting to half-court in disbelief.

To see what almost was …

Marcin’s post-game quote about his bravery/stupidity was priceless: “I was just standing there, and I hoped he wasn’t going to crush my face.”

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  • TJ 2

    With that picture that you guys took, isnt Gortats left heal on the semi-circle? shouldnt that be a defensive foul?

  • Big T

    I’m not Clipper or Griffin fan in general, but that was an obvious blocking call.

  • north

    Really? You think that call was wrong? He’s clearly set up in advance… Refs got it right this time. Nice to see defense finally getting calls.

  • GipTheClip

    Blake’s a punk ass anyway. Cant wait to see Andre Miller drop his ass on the court again.

  • JAY

    Charge

  • http://www.facebook.com/dworlds David Brandon

    he was late. barely, but late.

  • top_gun

    LOL @ Hakim Warrick acting like he got shot from the back when Griffin bumped him.

  • Curtis G

    @ north and JAY:
    This is part of the reason why NBA refs tend to be on the wrong end of some of the most insane conspiracy theories and other crazy accusations; their inability to enforce even their own rules. True, Gortat was already set up and Griffin took off from pretty far back which highlighted the fact that Gortat was waiting BUT (and this is a pretty important but), the NBA rule books specifically say that if ANY part of a defending player is in the semi-circle under the goal when contact is made on an offensive player, IT IS A BLOCK! No if, ands, or buts about it. That said, Gortat’s left foot is clearly on the line… right in front of the baseline official… who failed to blow his whistle… while a ref behind the play made the call. That’s bad, inconsistent, and exactly why NBA fans always think there is a conspiracy going on in the NBA.

    While the charge/block call is arguably the hardest call to make for an official, that ambiguity is usually reserved for instances where the players are not right at the basket where all the official has to do is look at the feet of the defender…. which is all the baseline official had to do here. And while I am not advocating that Blake Griffin get the benefit of a doubt EVERY time he enters the paint (though we all know he will eventually get exactly that!), as a ref, calls like this should be easy enough to make especially since this play is COMPLETELY reviewable. It just adds insult to injury (on Blake’s behalf) that the refs got the call wrong, he fouled out, and then got a tech on top of that. It’s also why, as smart as I think I am, I too believe the NBA refs do indeed operate under specific agendas… be they personal or business, mandated or not.

  • Brown

    Gortat’s body was still moving into Griffin. That’s a blocking call.

  • mules

    Gortat may have been a split-second late (Blake looked like he was already in the air when Gortat slide into position) but that a tough call that could go either way almost every time. What seemed fairly clear is that Gortat’s left heel never made it out of the restricted area…shoulda been called a blocking foul. Even if it would have counted…not a dunk. It’s another Mozgov Special.

  • Eyeused2b

    Whether it counted or not, that’s going on the Blake Show Highlight DVD.

  • APE

    LOL @ HAKIM WARRICK

  • Fred

    Travel!

    ;-)

  • control

    Gortat was late, heel still on the line, and he boosted himself into Griffin and had both hands on him as well. Play shouldn’t even be a foul, except the NBA is the pussiest league in the world now, but since a foul was called, it should be against Gortat.

    I’d rather see a guy get crowned and give the defender props for going up on the dunk, than to see a guy slide in when a guy is in the air and then flop to get a charging call. They really need to take charges out of the game, and drawing charges, it’s one of the most bullshit and pussiest calls in the entire sport. If you ain’t man enough to stop a guy, you shouldn’t be rewarded for flopping on the ground. Fuck manu for his contribution to the sport in this area.

  • the truth

    It was a block, i don’t care if he was set for the whole possession. His damn foot was on the line

  • Steve

    Someone needs to slow this down frame by frame…….i tried with the pause button, but not the best. If you look at Gortat’s feet they are sort of spread pigeon toed, with only a fraction of his heel on the line.

    As impressive as the dunk is, I would like to think the officials got the call right. Are you honestly telling me that with two bodies as big as BG and MG that as a fan you want the officials zoning in on the most minimal percentage of Gortat’s size 15 touching the line and not the contact that was bound to happen when the bodies collided? Had it been completely obvious to the naked eye and Gortat had his foot obviously in the circle, that is one thing, but too many people chew out the officials on blown calls and this should not be one of them.

  • 5850

    It’s still a DUNK, doesn’t matter whistle or not.

  • Curtis G

    @ Steve:
    That’s why the officials were given the ability to use instant replay; so they can bet the calls right. What’s the point of having it if you aren’t going to use it. For starters, they got the call wrong and secondly, I think this was a case of the official having already decided he was going to blow the whistle. He saw a train wreck coming and had already called 911. In this case, the call went against Griffin and I believe, had he not ran up the court with the ball rather childishly, the refs might have congregated to get the call right. Still, this is a perfect example of the refs taking revenge on a player for what they perceive to be “bad behavior” rather than calling the game the way it should be. Look, no one expects efs to get it right a hundred percent of the time but “foot in restricted space” has to be one of the more concrete rules out there. I don’t care if a player pulls a “Perkins face” after every call… if it is a legit foul, it needs to be called as such. After all, if a ref is going to punish “bad behavior” why do they keep falling for flops and rewarding a behavior that is obviously detrimental to the game?

  • MTX

    @control

    Do you really think that a guy that stood up for a 250+ pounds player to Jump straight into his chest is flopping? Flopping to me is what bosh did to boozer, overreact on minimal contact

  • control

    MTX

    You said it right there in your comment “stood up for” him. Real man basketball ain’t about standing up and falling down, it’s about jumping up and throwing down. Gortat ain’t no small guy himself…he IS an NBA center and though he may not be as strong or athletic as Blake, he is on par when it comes to size at least. This instance of flopping isn’t one of those ones where you want to puke in your mouth and quit watching the NBA, but it still IS flopping.

    That example you mention with Bosh and Boozer, that is beyond flopping, that is just straight out disgusting. The thing is, that is the trend this league is going in. At first someone would have to elbow you and throw you to the ground for it would be an offensive foul, now you just have to fall…soon Bosh’s pussy ass play will be the norm…I’ll pass on that form of basketball.

  • http://recoverthegospel.com Eddie

    I think Warrick liked that dunk and glad it wasn’t him @ the 20 second mark

  • Mark

    MTX, I’m not even sure there was contact from Boozer on that play. I think the wind knocked him down.

  • Robert

    Blake takes 4 steps, don’t know how this gets ignored!! Obvious Travel….

  • Steve

    @Curtis

    The officials cannot use instant replay during a game to change a foul call, otherwise we would have 10hr games because every foul would be contested. Would the officials really gathered together to change the call had he not acted like a clown? Probably not, as it would take the integrity away from the original official.

  • KnicksFan

    nba officiating at its best….sarcasm