What alternate universe does Commissioner Stern live in?

Posted: May 8, 2010 in NBA, sports opinion

This thought jumped to mind after hearing Stern warn NBA coaches to stop trying to manipulate refs during the 2010 playoffs.  This was particularly prompted by Phil Jackson wondering how Kevin Durant got to the free throw line so frequently.  Durant attempted 10.1 shots per game in the regular season.

Now this is where Stank-0 gets a bit confused. Donaghy has done his time to society for fixing NBA games.  He named a series that most fans already assumed had been finagled with, the 2002 Western Conference Finals.  In the interest of full disclosure, Stank-0 knew that it was gonna go the distance, 7 games.  Too many people were getting caught up and everyone was talking about it.

So after Donaghy, Stern claims it was a rogue ref, which is plausible.  Let’s look at it. One ref can make a call that s/he feels needs to be made but there’s a system that checks the calls that were made.  So in theory, that system should have been able to catch Donaghy immediately after a game, right?  The tape is looked at right after the game ends just to keep the refs on their game and to make them aware of blown/missed calls.

At the very least we have a broken system, where the backchecking is insufficient.

What is further troubling is Stern’s refusal to allow an independent inquiry into the officiating.  We are told simply to “trust him.”  Uh… it’s not 1950 anymore.  Authority, in general, does not get that kind of leeway. 

We know there are star calls, right? Big stars, rising stars, and superstars get favorable calls.  Again we don’t tune into to watch bench players and scrubs out there so it’s in the NBA’s interest to keep the stars on the floor.

So instead of criticizing, Stank-0 will offer a solution.  1. Change the marketing scheme of the NBA.  Focus more on the team than the individual, more on basketball and the level of play. If the focus is on the team vs. the star of the team, then there is less pressure to make sure the star stays on the floor.

If you ask a fan about the 2002 WCF, most have a feeling that Game 6 was not called evenly because there were millions of reasons to have a Game 7.  To think otherwise is naive.

To give you an idea how bad it still is, many fans expected some bad calls to go the Lakers way against the Thunder.  People expected the Thunder to get shafted by the zebras because they are standing in the way of a potential Kobe vs. LeBron NBA Finals.

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