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James Harden pulled off an obvious flop to lead the Nets to victory over Kawhi Leonard and the Clippers.
James Harden’s game is polarizing among NBA fans. What he did against Kawhi Leonard late in Sunday’s game between the Brooklyn Nets and LA Clippers will only fuel debates Monday morning.
The Clippers were trailing by two points with eight seconds to play when Leonard drove to the hoop. Harden was defending him and flopped to the floor like he was hit with an invisible force.
The referees bought it and the Nets wound up winning the game.
Harden flops to a victory
That was one of the weaker calls of the season. The fact it came on a potential game-tying basket as well is just awful.
Leonard was driving, Harden put his hand on him, and he barely pushed him away. A nudge at most, if you will. But Harden acted like Leonard speared him and fans saw a game between two contenders end in controversial fashion.
This was a terrible way to end what was mostly an exciting game. Harden and Kyrie Irving carried the Nets in Kevin Durant’s absence and battled against Leonard and Paul George all night. This was a matchup filled with stars, but a flop is what decided the game at the end.
The NBA may get to a point where flops can automatically be reviewed. The problem has been in the game for some time and flailing to the floor to draw a foul, while allowed, is not great for the fans or the sport itself.
The win gave the Nets the season series over the Clippers and the ending has fans eager to see these two teams meet up again. It would be hard to complain about a Nets-Clippers Finals matchup if both sides are at full strength … and if Harden recovers from this intense flop, of course.