Dates:June 13, 15, 18, and 20,2006
Location: AmericanAirlines Arena (Miami) and AmericanAirlines Center (Dallas)
Referees:Dan Crawford, Ken Mauer, Jack Nies (Game 3); Dick Bavetta, Mike Callahan, Bernie Fryer (Game 4); Joey Crawford, Joe DeRosa, Bennett Salvatore (Game 5); Dan Crawford, Steve Javie, Ed Rush (Game 6)
Teams:Miami Heat vs. Dallas Mavericks
Game:NBA Finals, Games 3-6
Results:Heat win 98-96, 98-74, 101-100, and 95-92
Controversy:Yes, this calamity did not occur in just one game, but the majority of the series saw more free throws than we care to mention. A special note goes out to Heat guard Dwayne Wade, who set a record, with help from the referees, for the most free throws in a series with 97, including 25 in Game 5, the same number as the Mavericks' entire team. Wade attempted 73 free throws over the final four games, all won by Miami.
Bottom line: If you don't believe in conspiracy theories, the 2006 NBA Finals might change your mind. Some people think the series was rigged because the Mavericks went from looking like world beaters to beaten.
After taking a 2-0 edge in the series — winning the first two games by a combined 24 points — Dallas disappeared. And it wasn't all self-inflicted, as Miami made its run to winning four straight games and the NBA title from the free-throw line. In the series, the Heat attempted 207 free throws, 52 more than the Mavericks.
Said Mavs owner Mark Cuban, "It will go down in history as the worst officiated finals in the history of the game."