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Houston defeats Magic in OT for 2nd win of season

Houston barely escapes with a victory of the Orlando Magic. A couple of missed free throws (by Brewer and Harden) and a couple of made free throws (by Orlando) sent this game into overtime. It was a game were we probably should’ve won more comfortably, but the fact that we were able to get enough stops and make enough plays in order to win makes me feel more positive about this victory.

Notes:

-Vucevic played 16 minutes because he left in the middle of the game with a knee injury. Beverly also left the game midway through due to some kind of illness.

-Fournier had a 29 point game against us after scoring scoring 30 (a career high) against the Pelicans in the previous game.

-Harden had another inefficient night, shooting 6-22, but he scored 28 points because of his ability to get to the free throw line. As long as he can still do that when he’s having a bad shooting night, it shouldn’t hurt us too bad.

-Howard 10 for 10 from the field for 23 points and 14 rebounds. It’s nice to get a good game like this from Howard on a night where we certainly needed it.

 

Speaking of Howard, he got into foul trouble in the 3rd quarter. Picked up his 4th foul with 10 minutes left. It was the same “foul” that Vucivic injured his knee on that required him to leave the game. The problem was… Dwight Howard didn’t touch him. It’s hard for me to blame the refs for this one because I would’ve called it in real time too. Vucivic was trying to post up Howard, and after receiving the ball seemed to step on Howard’s foot or get tripped up somehow. I would’ve called the foul too in real time. But you go to the replay, and he just stepped on the court wrong and hyperextended his knee which caused the jerking motion that led them to believe there was some kind of contact.

Again, I can’t blame the refs for that mistake. But I do blame the system that is set up so that there is no way to get around those kinds of mistakes. The NBA has been expanding the use of replay every year, and have actually been testing out a challenge type of system in the D-League. Hopefully within a year or two we have some ability to challenge a call or some way to review and reverse a foul if there is more than enough evidence that there wasn’t one.

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