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NBA 2010 Conference Finals Officiating: What's Up?
I have seen it at its worst during the Lakers-Thunder Playoff Series, but I kind of saw some of same at the Lakers-Los Suns Western Conference Finals.
And so I say again, what the …?
I wrote about this at my hub regarding the Los Angeles Lakers-Oklahoma Thunder Series.
But what’s up with that? Here we go again. Again?
Game 6, 2010 NBA Western Conference Finals, the Suns backup point guard, Dragic comes over to fellow Yugoslav Laker Vujacic again, the same as he did in Game 5.
Again, the result is the same in both games, Vujagic getting the worse end of the referee’s whistle.
I know, Suns fans will say Vujacic should have gotten that Technical Foul in Game 5 (it was actually a double Technical call on both Goran and Sasha). And of course they would also argue that he also deserved that Flagrant Foul in Game 6.
But c’mon, it was his fellow countryman from the Phoenix Suns who was the initiator of the contact, in both occurrences. And for the record, I think flopping in the NBA has become ridiculous, all teams included. And in my book, sorry Goran, that was a flop.
Go on NBA officials and NBA fans, watch the clips. I hope for the next season, the NBA will create an anti-flopping move. I heard one NBA announcer say make it a foul to do so. I think, make it a technical foul. Please, you are professional athletes, you get paid a whole lot, to take some pain.
But taking nothing from Dragic, he was a beast in Game 6 and of course it was Steve Nash who was the beast in Game 5. And so they played a big part in the way the Suns climbed up from 18 points down in both games to tie it after a made three-point shot at Game 5 and to come within 3 in Game 6.
It makes for great drama though, when the opponents of Lakers can make it happen especially if they need a little help from the refs whistles.
And I am not saying that these games maybe an offshoot from the 2008 NBA Referee Scandal.
But I'll let you be the judge of this.
But think about it, especially after Tim Donaghy, the 2008 NBA whistle blower referee (pardon the pun) blowed the lid off biased calls that were made by two NBA referees who officiated a Playoff Game. (Remember the Lakers were finalists in 2008 and 2009. And miraculously again this year).
This is the backdrop here, Tim became a whistle blower following investigations about his own biased calls which supposedly made by him because he had made bets on games he was officiating in.
Talk about the NBA’s worst nightmare and talk about stirring up a hornet’s nest. And it’s kind of the same kind of thing we are hearing from disgraced cyclist Floyd Landis, but that’s another story, I may write about in the near future.
Going back to the NBA, according to Tim Donaghy, way back in the 2002 NBA Season, he had found out from Referee A that Referees A and Referee F wanted to extend a series to seven games. (You know, more games, more fun, more money)
Tim stated that he knew Referees A and F to be “company men”, meaning always acting in the interest of the NBA, and for that night, it was in the NBA's interest to add another game to that particular series.
Now, the teams were not named, but the 2002 Western Conference Finals was the only seven-game series that year and it was the Lakers who won Game 6 (thus extending the series to a game 7).
Looking at the stats, the Los Angeles Lakers attempted 18 more free throws than the Kings in the fourth quarter, and went on to win the 2002 NBA Finals.
Now, flash forward to 2010, and the Lakers are back in the Playoffs, back in the Western Conference Finals and don’t tell me that it is only the Lakers fans who are noticing the biased calls against the Los Angeles Lakers, especially when the games are played in the opposing team’s home court.
Here are the stats for the Lakers-Thunders 2010 First Round Western Conference Playoff Series: (I will only concentrate in the statistics on Free throws awarded and the Fouls called)
Game 1 at LA (Visiting team even had the edge in both FTs and PFs)
Free Throws (FTs)
Home Team 22
Personal Fouls (PFs)
Home Team 27
Game 2 at LA (Visiting team even had the edge in FTs, Home court slight edge on PFs)
Home Team 32
Home Team 30
Game 3 at OK (Home team had the edge in both FTs and PFs)
Home Team 34
Home Team 19
Game 4 at OK (Home team had the edge in both FTs and PFs)
Home Team 48
Home Team 23
Game 5 at LA (Home team had slight edge in both FTs and PFs)
Home Team 31
Home Team 19
Game 6 at OK (Home team had the edge in FTs and slight edge in PFs)
Home Team 31
Home Team 19
And here are the stats for the Lakers-Suns 2010 Western Conference Finals.
Game 1 at LA Staples (Phoenix, the visiting team had more free throws than the home team-LA)
LA 22 21
PH 32 23
Game 2 at LA Staples (The home team-LA had a few more free throws but also have a few more fouls called on them—so more or less two nice home games at LA)
LA 34 26
PH 26 23
Game 3 at Phoenix (Now, the same as what happened in the LA-OK Series, the calls took a weird turn, the visiting team LA, have more fouls and the home team PH was awarded more than double the number of free throws)
LA 20 28
PH 42 21
Game 4 at Phoenix (Again still in Phoenix, and again the visiting team LA, have almost double the number of fouls than the home team PH and was again the home team was awarded a lot more free throws)
LA 13 23
PH 32 12
Game 5 at LA Staples (Back to LA, much of the same with Games 1 and 2, more or less a nicely officiated game)
LA 23 24
PH 29 21
Game 6 at Phoenix (Back to Phoenix, and fearing some really good home cooking, the Lakers made it difficult for the home team to beat them, well up until the Flagrant Foul on Sasha Vujacic on Goran Dragic. And fortunately, there weren’t any significant discrepancy on the number of free throws awarded and the number of fouls called)
LA 28 23
PH 29 19
Calling David Stern…
Anyway, it’s again a Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers NBA Finals Year, so what else can we say?
May the best team win, free throws and fouls notwithstanding.
Let the games begin!
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