Lakers News: Luke Walton, Josh Hart In Disbelief DeAndre Ayton Wasn’t Called For Offensive Foul
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

There are myriad reasons the Los Angeles Lakers suffered an inexplicable loss to the Phoenix Suns, namely a lack of urgency and porous defense. But as they attempted to mount a comeback in the fourth quarter, a call that went in favor of the Suns arguably swung the outcome.

With Josh Hart having switched onto DeAndre Ayton, the Suns cleared out for the young center to operate. The decision was somewhat surprising considering Hart has already developed a reputation for being a stalwart defender when matched up on players bigger than him.

He denied Ayton’s initial and counter moves, then appeared to get hooked by his left elbow. However, Hart was whistled for a foul. “I saw me play great defense. Textbook defense,” Hart said of the play.

“He had the ball, tried to do a half-spin, I chested him. He turned around, I chested him. Shuffled his feet, he hooked me with an elbow. I’m not a contortionist. I can’t move my body in ways I can’t. He did that, got around me, and they called a foul on me.”

Ayton converted his two free throws, which extended the Suns’ lead to five points with 52.9 seconds remaining. LeBron James went on the attack and drew a foul but missed his two free throws.

Lakers head coach Luke Walton was in as much disbelief as Hart, and also avoided directly criticizing the officiating. “Under a minute to go in a one-possession game, where he traveled twice and then offensive fouled? That play?” Walton sarcastically responded when asked about the play.

“I didn’t see Josh foul him. Maybe I’ll get a better look at it from a different angle somewhere.”

Reminder: Vivid Seats is the Official Ticket Reseller of LakersNation.com. New Customers use “LAKERSNATION” (all CAPS) in the Vivid Seats App on your phone and get 10% off any Lakers home game ticket order for the remainder of the season.

You May Also Like

Nick Young Compares Lakers Locker Room To ‘Funeral’

Following the loss to the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night on the…

Lakers News & Rumors: Kobe Bryant Out & Wade on Getting Paid

Top Story: After missing three consecutive games with an ailing shin injury,…

Madison Square Garden Co. Buys the Great Western Forum

The former arena for the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles…

Kobe Bryant’s Connection With Fans Went Beyond Basketball

It’s been about seven months since the passing of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gigi, and seven other people in a…