Heat taking high road, not blaming referees for losses despite missed calls that may have cost them two wins

Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra reacts during overtime of the Heat’s loss at Washington on March 6. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

 

LOS ANGELES – What’s done is done, but the Miami Heat sure have had some bad luck lately when it comes to calls late in close games according to the league’s Last Two Minute Report.

And neither coach Erik Spoelstra nor Goran Dragic will blame the referees for Miami’s overtime loss at Sacramento on Wednesday in which two blown calls in the final 10 seconds of regulation went against the Heat.

“We had opportunities to win that game, up four with the ball, with 65 seconds to go,” Spoelstra said today after the Heat’s shootaround in preparation for tonight’s game against the Lakers.

“You’ve got to find a way to win the game, regardless of what the officials do. I don’t even care how other parts of the game went, that game was under control. We just have to be able to execute, get two shots, and we’re out of there with a win. We weren’t able to do that, so all of the rest of it is just narrative.”

The Heat had possession with a one-point lead when Dragic lost control of the ball and Miami was whistled for a 24 second violation with 9.3 seconds to play. But the report said Sacramento’s De’Aaron Fox fouled Dragic with 10.5 seconds to play. Dragic would have had two free throws.

Instead, the Kings received the ball because of the 24 second violation but on that same possession the report noted that Bogdan Bogdanovic committed a five second violation that was not called when attempting to inbound the ball with 9.3 seconds remaining. That would have resulted with the Heat being rewarded the ball and still holding a one-point lead.

Dragic did not use the play as an excuse following the game but acknowledged today that he was fouled.

“What I can say? If you say something you get fined. I’m not going to say nothing,” he said. “What can you do? You try to be cool because you know that you need to defend one more play or it’s overtime so you cannot lose control.”

Fox scored at the buzzer to send the game into overtime. The Heat were the victims of three bad calls late in their March 6 overtime loss at Washington, two in the final seconds.

Dragic said the team must put it all behind and look ahead.

“They’re not going to reverse the call or they’re not going to give us a win,” he said. “What is done is done. You cannot look back in the past, you focus in the future in tonight’s game.”

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