It was merely a Sacre-tease.
Some of sports' most head-scratching moments stem from rules that are rarely applied, and plenty of managers, coaches and players have experienced the kind of confusion that surrounded the end of the Lakers-Cavaliers game.
Caught in a rundown between second and third, the
But Suzuki was not ruled out immediately, giving a trailing runner ample time to advance to second base.
The reason umpires allowed Suzuki's serpentine route can be found in Rule 7.08 (a), which states a basepath is established "when the tag attempt occurs," and that a runner is out when he runs more than three feet away from his basepath "to avoid being tagged."
"Everyone assumes if you're out of the baseline, you're out," Scioscia said. "But the umpires said you can run wherever you want until the tag is being made. I lost that argument, but we still have that play on tape. We use it as a training tool."
A look at some other strange-but-true rules from the four major sports:
Through the wickets
Denver fans are still reeling over the botched snap that went over quarterback
Had Manning been under center instead of in the shotgun formation, the safety could have been avoided. Under a seldom-invoked rule, a snap that goes through a quarterback's legs but is never touched by him is a dead ball.
The situation unfolded in a 2007
But because Griese never touched the ball, referee Ed Hochuli called the play dead and penalized Chicago for a false start. The Bears went on to win, 16-9.
Fourth out required
A team has the bases loaded with one out, the manager calls for a suicide squeeze, and the bunt is popped up. The first baseman catches the ball and, after the runner sprinting home crosses the plate, tags first for a double play. The inning is over and the run doesn't count, right?
Wrong. Under baseball rules, the defensive team would have to appeal the play at third and tag the third-base bag before that runner is ruled out. If all nine fielders head to the dugout and cross the foul line, the inning is considered dead. The defensive team forfeits its right to appeal, and the run would count.
"We call it the fourth-out-of-an-inning rule," Scioscia said. "You have to be cognizant of the fact that if the runner scores before first base is tagged for the third out, then that run counts until you go tag third base."
In a 2009 game between New Jersey and New York,
Though time expired before the shot, Robinson took all kinds of heat from then-Knicks Coach
"That is a ridiculous move," Albert said. "He thought time had run out, but you never know. I don't know if he was confused as to which direction he was going."
But even if time hadn't expired, the shot would not have counted for the
For example, if a basket is made on a tip during a fight for a rebound, the points are credited to the closest offensive player.
Had Robinson's shot been made within regulation time, the play would have been ruled a turnover, the ball going to the Nets without a change of score.
Blades of infamy
Few Southern California fans knew of an
The Kings won the first game of the 1993
The stick was deemed illegal, McSorley went to the penalty box, and Montreal scored on the ensuing power play to send the game to overtime, where Eric Desjardins beat Kings goalie Kelly Hrudey for the game winner. The Canadiens went on to win the series in five games.
Just for kicks
Though it has been 37 years since it was last used successfully, the fair catch kick rule still exists in the NFL.
The rule allows a team that has made a fair catch to take a free kick — uncontested by the defense — at the goal posts. The kicking team may not use a tee. The ball must be placed or drop-kicked.
A successful kick is awarded three points. The last converted fair catch kick was a 45-yarder by San Diego's Ray Wersching against Buffalo in 1976. Perhaps the most famous one was Mac Percival's 43-yarder with 20 seconds left that gave the Chicago Bears a 13-10 win over Green Bay in 1968.
Obstruction is justice
In one of the most bizarre endings in World Series history, St. Louis defeated Boston in Game 3 last October on an obstruction call that allowed the winning run to score.
Left fielder Daniel Nava's throw beat Craig to the plate, but umpire
According to Rule 2.00, "After a fielder attempts to field a ball and misses, he can no longer be in the act of fielding. For example: an infielder dives for a grounder and the ball passes him and he continues to lie on the ground and delays the progress of a runner. He very likely has obstructed the runner."
Faked 'em out, temporarily
In one of the more hotly protested games in NBA history, Lakers guard
Players from both teams were drawn off their lines, resulting in a double lane violation.
Officials called for a tipoff at center court, which the Lakers won, and Nixon scored to force overtime.
The Lakers won in double overtime, but the
The league agreed, the Spurs won when the last three seconds were replayed when the teams met later in the season. The NBA rule book now states that "the free-throw shooter shall not purposely fake a free-throw attempt."
The ultimate no-show
A quick scan of the NHL rule book leaves you with this thought: These guys think of everything. There are several guidelines to follow if a referee or linesman has to leave the ice because of injury, and then there is this gem:
"If, through misadventure or sickness, the referees and linesmen appointed are prevented from appearing, the NHL will make every attempt to find suitable replacement officials; otherwise, the coaches of the two clubs shall agree on referees and linesmen.
"If they are unable to agree, they shall appoint a player from each side who shall act as referee and linesman, the player from the home club acting as referee and the player from the visiting club as linesman."