The opening weekend of a sport's season is undoubtedly always filled with different twists and turns. That said, it's hard to say many would have expected what happened during the Mad Ants' loss to the Texas Legends to occur on Friday night.
Did Fort Wayne have a timeout remaining, or did they not? That is the question at hand. With the game tied at 99-99, the Mad Ants called a timeout, and though it was initially deemed the team did in fact have one left, a split-second decision changed the outcome of the game. Officials ruled the team apparently did not have any timeouts remaining, and thus, charged Fort Wayne a technical foul for calling one without owning any.
The Legends made the subsequent free throw that followed, and went on to win the game. For more on the strange situation and the Mad Ants' protest, read below for some notes from the local Reggie Hayes of The News-Sentinel:
The protest stems from the finish of the Mad Ants' 100-99 loss to the Texas Legends on Friday in Frisco, Texas.
The Mad Ants' Olek Czyz pulled down a rebound after a missed Texas shot with the score 99-99 and the Ants called timeout.
The officials put the clock at 0.9 seconds remaining.
"The scorer's table said we had two timeouts, we used one of them and got Ron a shot and tied it at 99-99," Ants coach Conner Henry said. "They pushed it down, we made a stop and rebounded the ball and called our last timeout."
Texas' coaching staff argued that the Ants did not have any timeouts left, but officials checked with the scorer's table and initially determined they did, Henry said.
"Their assistant coaches were hammering their official scorer's table and got them to all of a sudden change their collective minds and realize maybe they had made a mistake," Henry said.
Officials assessed the Ants a technical foul for calling timeout when they had none, and Texas won on the subsequent free throw.
Hayes goes on to note that the timeout in question comes from an earlier occurrence when play was stopped due to an injury to Mad Ants guard Ramon Harris. The team should have been charged a timeout, but according to the official book, were not.
A decision from NBA D-League Commissioner Dan Reed is expected within 10-12 days.