DALLAS -- Commissioner David Stern denied the Dallas Mavericks' protest of their Dec. 18 loss to the Houston Rockets, the NBA announced Tuesday.
The Mavericks based their protest on a technical foul they argued was improperly called on center Erick Dampier with 1:01 remaining in the overtime period of the 116-108 loss. The technical foul was assessed during an eight-minute review of a flagrant foul called on Rockets guard Aaron Brooks.
Stern determined that the referees' decision to assess the technical foul -- Dampier's second of the game, resulting in his ejection -- was a judgment call and could not successfully be protested under NBA rules. The Mavericks had argued that it was a misapplication of the rules.
Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said he was not surprised that the protest was denied.
"But I think it sets a good precedent that I can build off of in the Board of Governors meeting," Cuban said, declining to discuss specifics. "I think we gave them some issues to think about."