Sunday, May 10, 2009

NBA's Refs Are Getting Out of Hand

The story of the 2009 NBA Playoffs hasn't been LeBron James or Kobe Bryant. It's been Stu Jackson and the referees.

If it isn't retroactive flagrant fouls or premature ejections, now they are flat out missing game-deciding calls. Today, the Dallas Mavericks got hosed when the refs decided not to blow the whistle when the Mavs were intentionally trying to foul Carmelo Anthony. Melo promptly nailed a game winning three which set the Mavs in a frenzy.

The NBA decided to say that the refs missed this one. Well, I'm pretty sure that will make Mark Cuban and his Maverick players a little happier, eh?

This comes after the refs have been prematurely tossing players out of games. When Ron Artest gets thrown out not once ... but twice ... when he shouldn't have, we have problems. Artest got ran after confronting Kobe Bryant after the infamous elbow (more on that later) in Game 2 and then for a bogus flagrant 2 foul in Game 3.

The NBA downgraded Artest's foul from a flagrant 2 to a flagrant 1. Again, that doesn't get Artest back on the floor for the remainder of Game 3.

And while we are speaking about elbows, the NBA has been full of them. And they've all gotten different answers. Dwight Howard got suspended for his elbow to Samuel Dalembert's head. Kendrick Perkins will not be suspended for doing the same thing to Mickael Pietrus. Kobe wasn't suspended for his elbow to Artest.

I do get why. Howard's elbow was after a play and was excessive and unnecessary. Both Perkins and Bryant did theirs during a play. Bryant was fighting for a rebound. Perkins was fighting through a pick. But then, so was Derek Fisher when he got a suspension for bowling over Luis Scola.

The playoffs have turned into Old Time Pottery. You go in there trying to find what you are looking for by praying that you don't bump into anything and break it.

Right now, I'm watching the playoffs and wondering if someone's gonna do something stupid. I'm even more scared that the refs see something stupid that isn't there. These games are too important to screw up. The Dallas Mavericks just had their heart ripped out by a missed (non) call. The Rockets don't understand why Kobe wasn't suspended, but Artest keeps getting thrown out of games. I don't understand why either, especially when nothing happened when Rajon Rondo slapped Brad Miller in the face.

Phil Jackson said what we all think. We all just want consistency. Sorry, but to me that missed call at the end of the Mavs/Nuggets game was more flagrant than any foul committed.

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