Everyone in the Timberwolves’ locker room on Wednesday night believed Kobe Bryant got away with a foul that allowed the Los Angeles Lakers to hold on to a much-needed victory in Minnesota.
Thursday, the NBA agreed with them: The league informed the Timberwolves that the referee crew should have called Bryant for a foul on a potential game-tying 3-pointer at the buzzer.
“Video review by the league office confirmed that Kobe Bryant fouled [Ricky] Rubio while Rubio was in his shooting motion,” the league said on its website. “Rubio should have been awarded three free throws.”
It won’t change the outcome of the game, a 120-117 victory for the Lakers, who have beaten the Timberwolves 22 straight times and are clinging to the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Recovery on schedule
Amare Stoudemire said his recovery from right knee surgery is going “a little bit ahead of schedule,” though he isn’t sure if he can return to the New York Knicks for the first round of the playoffs.
Stoudemire had surgery to clean up and remove tissue from the knee about 2½ weeks ago and the Knicks said his expected recovery time would be about six weeks.
The playoffs open the weekend of April 20.
“It’s going well. Actually going a little bit ahead of schedule right now, so I want to keep that progress going,” Stoudemire said in a phone interview.
The power forward had the same procedure, called a debridement, on the left knee in late October and returned New Year’s Day.
He averaged 14.2 points in 29 games as a reserve before getting hurt again.
Pacers’ Granger out
The Indiana Pacers say Danny Granger will have left knee surgery and miss the rest of the season, leaving them without one of their best offensive players for the postseason.
Granger’s injury-plagued season will be cut short after just five games. The team said the decision was made after talks among Granger, the Pacers medical staff and Dr. James Andrews, the noted sports physician.