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Two missed fouls in final minutes led to James Harden turnovers in Thunder's win at Rockets

The Thunder's 17-point comeback Monday against the Rockets was aided by favorable whistles. 

Two plays in the final two minutes that resulted in turnovers by Rockets guard James Harden were not officiated correctly, according to the NBA's last two-minute report released Tuesday afternoon. 

The first critical call came at the 1:48 mark in the fourth quarter. The Rockets led 105-104 when Thunder rookie Luguentz Dort drew an offensive foul against Harden

Dort shuffled in front of Harden and absorbed the contact, but the league ruled Dort "was late to the spot and makes contact with Harden which affects his (speed, quickness, balance, rhythm) on his drive to the basket. Harden braces for the oncoming contact and does not extend his arms to deliver contact." 

The league reviewed the play as an "incorrect call." 

The Thunder didn't score on the subsequent possession, but the second missed call led to OKC's go-ahead basket. 

Thunder guard Dennis Schroder defended Harden at the top of the 3-point line. Schroder thwarted Harden's first attempt at driving to the basket, but then Harden drove to his right and there was contact with Schroder near the free throw line. 

Harden lost the ball and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scooped it up and flew for a dunk on the other end. The play gave the Thunder a 106-105 lead with 1:13 left. The Thunder led for the remaining of the game in a 112-107 final. 

Schroder's contact with Harden that led to the turnover was an incorrect no call, according to the league. 

"Schroder is beat to the spot and turns his body into Harden and makes contact with his arm that affects his ability to maintain control of the ball," the league wrote in the last two-minute report. 

The Thunder closed the game on a 27-7 run. Oklahoma City (25-19) is two games behind Houston in the Western Conference standings. 

Related Photos
Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)

Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-be071766cf86e697a123eb4637ff5de8.jpg" alt="Photo - Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)" title="Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)"><figcaption>Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder forward Mike Muscala (33) and guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (2) defend during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)</figcaption></figure>
Joe Mussatto

Joe Mussatto joined The Oklahoman in August 2018 to cover OU football, men’s basketball and softball. He previously covered University of Kentucky football and basketball for SEC Country. Mussatto is from Oklahoma City and lives in Norman. Read more ›

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