For You People That Think The NBA Is Fixed.....

Tuesday, June 10, 2008


Here is the ref assignments for Game Three Tonight. The last time I posted the refs ahead of the game was the Joey Crawford non-call on Derek Fisher when he fouled (or didn't foul) Brent Barry in Game Six of the Western Conference Finals. Hey, well lookie here! Via Boston.com....

Official 1: Joey Crawford

In April 2007, NBA commissioner David Stern suspended Crawford for his conduct toward the Spurs' Tim Duncan. Crawford ejected Duncan from San Antonio's loss to the Mavericks after calling a second technical foul on the Spurs star while he was laughing on the bench. Duncan contended that Crawford challenged him to a fight.

The Celtics are 2-1 in '08 postseason games in which Crawford was part of the officiating crew.

Official 2: Bennett Salvatore

Salvatore made a controversial call against Celtics captain Paul Pierce late in the third quarter of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals, when Pierce pumped faked Rodney Stuckey, leaned in, and hit a long three-pointer. But Salvatore called a charge on Pierce and a potential four-point play turned into a Detroit possession.

The Celtics are 3-2 in '08 postseason games in which Salvatore was part of the officiating crew.

Official 3: Mark Wunderlich

Wonderlich, along with Crawford and Joe Forte, was part of the three-man crew that did not call of foul on Lakers guard Derek Fisher for banging into San Antonio's Brent Barry on the final play of the Spurs’ 93-91 loss in Game of Game 4 in the Western Conference finals. The NBA later admitted that it appears a foul should have been called on Fisher.
Obviously since this comes from Boston.com the article is writing in regards to them, but it never ceases to amaze me how David Stern puts the most controversial refs in some of the most important Playoff games. Not only is Joey Crawford involved but if you need a home team to win a game there's no better ref to choose than Bennett Salvatore. From a Bill Simmons column back in June of 2006.....
"I don't think the NBA fixes games, but they have one trick that they use for situations like this -- when they want a home team to win the game, they invariably assign the worst referees possible to that game for two reasons: Bad referees have a tendency to get swayed by the home crowd, and bad referees never have the stones to make a tough call on the road.

Then I went on to list the worst six referees. Here was No. 2 on the list:

"2. Bennett Salvatore -- Always one of the worst, he took it to another level this season. If you see him on the court at the start of the game, get ready for about six technicals, two near-brawls and both coaches having to be restrained by their assistants at various times."
Dunh! Dunh! Dunh!

Referee assignments for tonight (Boston.com)

9 Comments:

Did you find the first column that Simmons was quoting from in this column?

Jeff V said...
Jun 10, 2008, 1:59:00 PM  

From the Sports Guy's column on Monday...

If you're a Lakers fan, take solace in the fact you'll get every call at the Staples Center if the crowd shows up; not only do these things have a way of coming around, but if Bennett Salvatore doesn't officiate Game 3, it will be the biggest sports upset of this century.

So, yeah...2-1 heading into game 4? Probably.

Mark said...
Jun 10, 2008, 2:33:00 PM  

Well at least Simmons took time away from writing his 50th Celtics article in a row to predict the future.

GMoney said...
Jun 10, 2008, 4:03:00 PM  

To add to the Simmons/Salvatore prediction:

This is from his most recent chat.



Bill Simmons: I have been watching hoops for 35 years and have never seen that play interpretated like that - EVER - not at any level. The correct call was "traveling," and if you watch PP on that play, he turns tro run back up court because he assumed it was a travel. That call was amazing. Bennett Salvatore never disappoints. He is a mortal lock to referee Game 3 of the Finals. Etch it in stone.

Anonymous said...
Jun 10, 2008, 7:49:00 PM  

Funny this was posted today, since Donaghy later in the day filed papers, talking about NBA refs fixing games.

Brent said...
Jun 10, 2008, 9:06:00 PM  

Wow. So the choices are:

1) The NBA "fixes" its own games,

2) The NBA doesn't fix but influences games to their marketing advantage with intentionally poor referee selection, or

3) The NBA and David Stern are unfathomably stupid in terms of basketball IQ.

Actually, I would completely believe either category. It is bad when a columnist for ESPN.com named "The Sports Guy" has cracked the matrix, is calling the NBA out, and they still forge ahead like all is well.

Steve said...
Jun 10, 2008, 10:11:00 PM  

The NBA Refs as a whole are awful at best. If you want to see REAL basketball you have to wait for March Madness to come around. The NBA ref issues are turning the NBA into the likes of World Wrestling. I watch the NBA every year and I follow my favorite teams but every year I get more and more disgusted with the playoffs and the refs.

Anonymous said...
Jun 11, 2008, 1:12:00 AM  

Stern is the most overrated commissioner in sports. 3 things have contributed to the decline in the NBA's popularity: 1) the embrace of the gangsta culture, 2) the emphasis on stars rather than teams - even when the stars are barely likable (e.g. Kobe) and 3) the awful, predictable refereeing.

The Celtics loss last night was due to cold shooting by KG and Pierce but the fact is, the best refereeing is when fans don't notice them. Stern doesn't get it.

Anonymous said...
Jun 11, 2008, 9:58:00 AM  

Don't care who wins the series, but c'mon Pierce misses 12 of 14? At least pretend to try.

Anonymous said...
Jun 11, 2008, 11:05:00 AM  

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