The Dallas Mavericks and owner Mark Cuban have launched a formal protest of the team’s game against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday. The protest will revolve around a bizarre incident in the third quarter when the Mavericks mistakenly thought they had possession and failed to defend the Warriors’ inbounds play.

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“For those wondering about the play with 1:54 to go on the 3rd, let me explain what happened,” Cuban said in a tweet after the game. “The ref called Mavs ball. The announcer announced it. Then there was a timeout. During the time out the official changed the call and never told us. Then when they saw us line up as if it were our ball, he just gave the ball to the Warriors. Never said a word to us They got an easy basketball.”

Cuban’s claim that Dallas players were confused about possession sheds some light on the strange play because, to viewers at home, it seemed that the Mavericks simply forgot which side of the court they were supposed to be on. Warriors guard Jordan Poole was quick to realize what was happening and urged the ref to give him the ball before passing to forward Kevon Looney for an easy dunk. The Warriors won 127-125.

“Crazy that it would matter in a 2 point game,” Cuban went on to say. “Worst officiating non call mistake possibly in the history of the NBA. All they had to do was tell us and they didn’t.”

As of Thursday morning, at which point the result technically stands pending further investigation, the Mavericks dipped below .500 with a 36-37 record following the home defeat. The NBA is notorious for requiring a high burden of proof in protests and typically sides with referees in matters between human error and a misunderstanding of the rules. Of the 44 recognized game protests in NBA history, only six have succeeded. The last one, also filed by Cuban and the Mavericks in 2020, failed and resulted in heavy fines for the owner.

In an extremely competitive Western Conference, a single win at the end of the season could make the difference between a guaranteed playoff spot, a trip to the play-in tournament or missing the playoffs altogether. There is currently a four-game difference between fourth and 12th in the conference, with both the Warriors and Mavericks settling into the middle of that group.

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