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Deberg_1990
06-11-2008, 08:03 AM
Good read. I absolutely agree. Its time for refs in all sporting leagues to be held accountable and be questioned publicly about calls.


http://www.kansascity.com/sports/columnists/jason_whitlock/story/658809.html


LOS ANGELES | The system is broken, and David Stern’s belittling of disgraced and criminal former NBA ref Tim Donaghy won’t fix the officiating crisis undermining the credibility of all big-time sports.

The system is broken, and the one “media” organization — ESPN — that could provide significant pressure to enact dramatic change from sports leagues is in partner$hip with the leagues in question.

Stern and the NBA soldiered on Tuesday night, conducting game three of the Celtics-Lakers finals series at Staples Center as though Donaghy’s most recent media maneuver didn’t question the legitimacy of the proceeding.

Donaghy, who is awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to betting on and manipulating games he worked, alleged in court filings that two referees in a 2002 Lakers-Kings playoff series favored the Lakers in game six to ensure extending the best-of-seven series to seven games.

The game was one of the most controversial in recent NBA history. The Lakers shot 27 free throws in the fourth quarter alone. Journalists covering the contest labeled it horribly one-sided officiating. Then-Kings coach Rick Adelman blasted the officiating.

Donaghy’s court document also alleged that top league officials instructed the refs to avoid calling technical fouls and fouling out big stars. Donaghy also claimed that the league manipulated games to increase ticket sales and ratings.

His charges couldn’t be more perfectly timed. Game two of the current series was marred by the huge free-throw disparity enjoyed by the Celtics. As predicted by longtime and casual NBA followers, the Lakers benefitted from favorable officiating Tuesday night in their 87-81 victory.

Kobe Bryant shot 18 free throws Tuesday, which is eight more than the entire Lakers team attempted in game two.

Game three was an awful mess. The Celtics shot 35 percent from the field. Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett combined to shoot eight of 35 from the field. The Lakers connected on just 43 percent from the field. Lamar Odom and Pau Gasol combined for 13 points on five-of-18 shooting. Both teams were terrible from the free-throw stripe. Four players broke double-figure scoring and only three players — Kobe Bryant, Ray Allen and Sasha Vujacic — played at a high level.

“It was not a beautiful ballgame,” Lakers coach Phil Jackson admitted. “Hopefully, both of us will play better basketball on Thursday night.”

Yeah, they need to, because Tuesday’s game is hardly worth discussing. Donaghy and his allegations were a much more relevant topic. They are not as easy to dismiss as Stern would lead you to believe.

“This is criminal activity that Tim Donaghy has admitted to, and this is sour grapes,” Stern said. “… Because a convicted felon said something about his colleagues in order to lower his time away, am I worried about that? I’m worried that someone is out there saying it, but you’re the one who will either deal with it or not as part of the media.”

Stern is worried about the media. Why?

ESPN, the worldwide leader, has no real interest in exhaustively examining Donaghy’s allegations. Not when there is a Barry Bonds or O.J. Mayo or Miguel Tejada to embarrass and expose.

Why hold a league’s billion-dollar feet to the fire and jeopardize a lucrative relationship when you can cherry-pick cheating and lying athletes to blame for sports’ ills?

As Stern said countless times, there was nothing really new about Donaghy’s allegations. His claim of unethical and manipulated officiating has been out there for some time. We in the media know that fans have a growing suspicion that games are consistently and intentionally being impacted by bad officiating

At the very least, referees should be subject to questioning by the “free” press. The American system is predicated on checks and balances and watchdog organizations. Why are refs treated as a protected, fragile species?

A 25-year-old quarterback has to answer for his dumb decisions, but a 50-year-old ref gets escorted from the field and almost never has to answer for the mistakes he/she makes that dictate the outcome.

Sports have become too lucrative to operate under customs developed before there were billion-dollar TV contracts at stake. This problem isn’t limited to the NBA. I still remember Super Bowl XL and the one-sided officiating that sabotaged Seattle’s chances of beating the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Stern talked about “transparency” and how his league has nothing to hide. If that’s the case, then he should be the first commissioner to make his refs accessible to reporters after every game. I think we would be less likely to see another Tim Donaghy if refs knew they had to immediately answer for their suspicious actions.

little jacob
06-11-2008, 08:11 AM
great article.

if a game in the NFL was ever fixed, it was that super bowl. that was the most one-sided officiating I can remember. seattle should have won that game.

calling espn "media" is brilliant. it's more like Entertainment Tonight for athletes.

Extra Point
06-11-2008, 08:13 AM
Refereeing is not a party, nowadays-- grade school, high school, college, majors. People give them too much crap, myself included, but that's another story.

The "integrity" of the league office will not stand to be tarnished. Stern will walk away unscathed from this. Who are folks going to believe?

The finals are the only NBA games which I watch at least 15 minutes. Basketball used to be a game of finesse, but that went away a long time ago. Three steps and sliding screens are the norm now.

milkman
06-11-2008, 08:13 AM
How would game officials ever survive the questioning?

KCUnited
06-11-2008, 08:14 AM
You know its BS when the network won't even replay the alleged foul on TV. The NFL will show a pass interference call from 20 different angles at 5 different speeds. Baseball will replay balls and strikes and close plays at the plate, but the NBA won't show the called foul.

Deberg_1990
06-11-2008, 08:15 AM
it's more like Entertainment Tonight for athletes.

Yep. Well said. Thats why i cant stand to watch it much anymore.

Baconeater
06-11-2008, 09:57 AM
Heh, the Lakers/Kings series that is in question coincides with the time I started losing interest in the NBA, it was pretty obvious something was going on, and there were plenty of people suspicious of the officiating LONG before any of this came out. Stern needs to realize that perception is reality, and for him to scoff at this will only further damage the league's credibility.

You know its BS when the network won't even replay the alleged foul on TV. The NFL will show a pass interference call from 20 different angles at 5 different speeds. Baseball will replay balls and strikes and close plays at the plate, but the NBA won't show the called foul.
The networks don't really have time to show them, the game moves at too fast of a pace, and the NBA takes full advantage of that fact.

Rausch
06-11-2008, 10:04 AM
great article.

if a game in the NFL was ever fixed, it was that super bowl. that was the most one-sided officiating I can remember. seattle should have won that game.

:rolleyes:

Phobia
06-11-2008, 10:07 AM
calling espn "media" is brilliant. it's more like Entertainment Tonight for athletes.

I haven't watched ESPN since the last NFL game was on. I just can't stomach that garbage. I don't patronize their website any longer either.

Rausch
06-11-2008, 10:10 AM
I haven't watched ESPN since the last NFL game was on. I just can't stomach that garbage. I don't patronize their website any longer either.

Now that the NFLN is on there's no need to...

CoMoChief
06-11-2008, 10:10 AM
NBA reffing has been shitty for years. This isn't anything new.

The continuation rule is retarded in the NBA. If a foul is on the ground, it's on the ground, period, and that person should not get a FT. There was a call last night on Perkins IIRC where he was fouled on the ground, 2 seconds went by, he then turned his pivot foot jumped up and dunked it and the ref called it "And-1".

To be honest I couldn't ****ing believe my eyes. That's a call a 3rd grader could call and this NBA ref just completely blew this call.

In game 2 there was a Lakers player (their white European 3 man I forget his name) but he was on a fast break all alone and messed up on his footing, took 4 STEPS and made the break away layup.........yet no call.

FAX
06-11-2008, 10:17 AM
The NBA isn't really "basketball". It's something else, Mr. CoMoChief.

FAX

StcChief
06-11-2008, 10:30 AM
The NBA isn't really "basketball". It's something else, Mr. CoMoChief.

FAX
yep. it is NBA .... and B short for BS.

they need to put the Basketball back in the game

little jacob
06-11-2008, 10:36 AM
:rolleyes:

maybe you are a steelers fan or something. it was obvious. i'm not saying the game was fixed, but that was the first time i can remember wondering if and NFL game was a setup because it was so one-sided.

Chiefs Pantalones
06-11-2008, 01:21 PM
In 1997 the the NFL wanted Elway to get his ring. Denver's olinemen should've been kicked out of the game for wearing that oily shit on their jerseys, and Gonzalez had both feet in bounce easily on the touchdown of that game. The official was looking right at it. The next week against the Steelers there were questionable calls as well.

ChiefsCountry
06-11-2008, 01:37 PM
yep. it is NBA .... and B short for BS.

they need to put the Basketball back in the game

BS, NBA is real basketball - the problem is the players are so damn good they make it look to easy.

little jacob
06-11-2008, 01:39 PM
you mean they look like they are taking it easy

Rausch
06-11-2008, 01:40 PM
maybe you are a steelers fan or something. it was obvious. i'm not saying the game was fixed, but that was the first time i can remember wondering if and NFL game was a setup because it was so one-sided.

I didn't see it that way at all.