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Kawhi Leonard, Tyronn Lue react to James Harden’s game-saving flop

Kawhi Leonard, James Harden, Tyronn Lue, Clippers, Nets

Tyronn Lue and the LA Clippers fell to the Brooklyn Nets on Sunday evening, but the contest came down to a dramatic finish thanks to Kawhi Leonard and James Harden.

With the Nets leading 110-108 and 11 seconds remaining, Kawhi Leonard drove to the basket to attempt a game-tying layup. Despite James Harden grabbing him, Leonard made the shot at the rim and appeared to get fouled. The whistle blew, but not in the Clippers’ favor.

Instead, Leonard was hit with an offensive foul for pushing off James Harden.

The replay clearly shows Harden jumping backwards to sell the call, and it worked. He then went to the free throw line, knocked down a pair of free throws, and iced the game.

Kawhi Leonard took around 45 minutes to show up for his postgame press conference, and for the first time all season, wanted to do a dual presser with Paul George. Leonard received one question about the offensive foul call.

“You know, my take from it is if we gonna pretty much play bull ball at the end of the game, let both sides play it,” Leonard said. “But they didn’t call it, so good defense. I got grabbed early, but like I said, no call, so great defense.”

As the next question turned to George, a clearly frustrated Leonard got up and left. That’s it. Leonard took one question after his 29-point, 12 rebound performance and left.

Tyronn Lue didn’t want to get into specifics on the call either, but did give a bit more than Leonard.

“I mean they called it so there’s nothing you can do about it now,” coach Tyronn Lue added. “I’m not a big complain guy but some guy said he had his arm before Kawhi was able to push off and he said Harden grabbed his – I don’t know because I didn’t look at it. To me the game’s over and nothing you ca do about it so it is what it is.”

The Clippers would’ve challenged the call, but they were both out of timeouts and used their only challenge just a few minutes earlier on a Patrick Beverley moving screen that left Jeff Green on the ground for a few minutes before heading off to the locker room. The challenge was deemed unsuccessful, and the Clippers lost their second-to-last timeout.

Leonard and the Clippers will face the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night in what will be the final home game before a five-game road trip to close out the first half of the season. After that comes the All-Star break, where Kawhi Leonard, and likely Paul George, will play.