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Conspiracy theories rock NBA Finals after hoop-height drama

Author
news.com.au,
Publish Date
Fri, 10 Jun 2022, 10:48am
The height of the basket is measured by a 10-foot pole ahead of Game 1 of the NBA Finals - shooting stars like Steph Curry could be affected if it's not accurately set up. Photos / Twitter, Getty
The height of the basket is measured by a 10-foot pole ahead of Game 1 of the NBA Finals - shooting stars like Steph Curry could be affected if it's not accurately set up. Photos / Twitter, Getty

Conspiracy theories rock NBA Finals after hoop-height drama

Author
news.com.au,
Publish Date
Fri, 10 Jun 2022, 10:48am

NBA fans are crying foul after the Golden State Warriors had to pause their shootaround as it was confirmed the goals they were using were two inches too high.

In the first game of the series inside Boston's TD Garden with the series locked at 1-1, the Celtics claimed a big 116-110 win as the franchise looks to win its first title since 2007-08 and 18th overall.

But there was drama before the game — one some fans believe may have hurt the Warriors before the first tip off — when the players and coaches realised the that height of the basket didn't look right.

The rim of the basket is supposed to be 10-feet high — this basket was 10 feet, two inches.

The height was checked by a 10 foot pole and was quickly adjusted.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr laughed off the drama as there was still two hours before tip off.

"Players have a really sharp eye for that. Players can tell," he said. "I imagine somebody went out there, looked at it, didn't look right. So as long as they take care of it, then everything is good.

"It's a good thing the game starts at midnight. We'll have plenty of time to fix it."

The last line was a dig at the NBA's start times for the Finals, which tip off at 9pm ET.

But the drama sparked comparison's to the Celtics' golden period between the 1960s and 1980s when opponents used to accuse former team president and coach Red Auerbach of screwing with opposition teams, including turning off the hot water in the visitor's showers.

Celtics Hall of Famer Bill Walton said he didn't believe it was anything like that but did say: "I'm surprised Steve didn't say anything about Red Auerbach."

Despite the Warriors laughing it off, it didn't stop the conspiracy theories starting.

United Press International sports content producer Connor Grott posted: "A Boston team cheating? Has this ever happened before???"

After another fan pressed him on the issue, Grott replied: "So you're saying that a two-inch error on the hoop, which they also use to warm up on, won't have any impact …? What if Boston goes on a crazy run in the first half? What if they ask for the rim to be adjusted after finally 'detecting it' in the second half?

"Dude … Kobe detected a rim that was 1/4 of an inch off. Two inches is a MASSIVE difference to the point where it looks intentional.

"The damage likely already done, though. No telling how long they warmed up on the hoop before it was discovered. That's enough to throw them off."

Vox Media's Anthony F. Irwin tweeted: "Weird things happening in Boston during the finals. A tradition unlike any other."

Others pointed to the New England Patriots and Deflategate.

However, Celtics beat reporter Keith Smith wrote: "I find it hilarious that people believe the Celtics were going to make the Warriors shoot on a basket that was too high and then magically fix it, without anyone noticing, before Boston had to shoot on that hoop in the second half.

"Some of y'all live in Fantasyland, I swear."

And for the record, the Celtics' shootaround was also stopped as their baskets were checked.