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What's With The 2010 NBA Playoff's Officiating?

Updated on June 11, 2010

Now, I only have followed the Lakers-Thunder Playoff Series, of course being from LA but I say, What the …?

It’s a good thing NBA Commissioner David Stern has called out Lakers Coach Phil Jackson that they are now considering suspending the coaches for their tirade of the referees who are out there doing their very best.

But of course, we do know they are doing their best, but I’m afraid there is much room for improvement. And we all know that once NBA playoff season comes, out comes the rants of the playoff coaches. And the fines that Stern gives them, obviously isn’t enough.

Now, I am impressed with the way Jackson have kept most of his comments to himself regarding the LA-OKC Series but I’m sure he has some choice words for the officiating, which for any basketball fan is a big key on how the entire series was played and won.

But I am not taking anything away from the young Oklahoma Thunder team, in fact I applaud them and all their efforts and I also am animated about their fans at home, I hope the entire crowd in Staples Center could be as one as they have been. Let’s wait and see.

But what I am sore about is the inconsistent and the seemigly biased calls by the referees but then again what else is new right? Home cooking anyone?

Take Game 1, played at Staples, I know the home team do have a slight advantage but basically this game was officiated just like anything we have been used to in 2010 NBA Season, although to me it was fairly refereed.

Now, Game 2 again played at Staples, it seems like more of the same, just a slight advantage of calls in favor of the home team and the game was so close, it could have been anybody’s game. And that is why fans know that officiating is the key in winning games, especially in close games because at least fans can be sure that both teams do have a chance in winning.

So 2-0, in favor of the home court team and the number one seed in the Western Conference.

But then going to Oklahoma City for Game 3, the officiating suddenly took a bad turn somewhere. Although the game was also close, it could have also been a toss-up. But when you see the home team given three times more free throws than the visiting team, you know something should be said about it.

Game 4, is much of the same, some 50 free throws for the home team and some 30 personal fouls for the visiting team. What more can I say?

So we’re tied at two wins apiece, 2-2 great for the fans, great for the ratings, great for the NBA.

Game 5, back to the home court of the Lakers and hopefully back to some sort of normalcy, even though we know that being normal in the NBA as in anywhere else is still subject to the occasional home court cooking.

3-2 and back to OKC and back for more home cooking I’m afraid, because who doesn’t want a Game 7 in a tightly played series between the young high flying break neck speedster upstarts against the aging and hurting warrior champs.

But as fate has it, not even the obviously one-sided call by the referees could stop the old and tested veteran team to outscore the young fast running stallions, be it by the closest of margins.

Game 6

Why one-sided, well for one thing, the home court had been givena ton of freebies, over two times more free throws than the visiting team. But the glaring examples are the calls on flops by the home team players and the calls on the “it-looks-like-there-was-a-foul-there-somewhere-then-there-must-be-one-against-the-visiting-team-and-give-foul-throws-to-the-home-team”. Also, there was also the occasional “we-really-didn’t-see-who-touched-it-last-but-it-should-be-the-visiting-team-last-touch-so-throw-in-home-team”.

Not to mention, the and-one’s (plus one free throw)’s and the occasional “if-the-home-team-player-manages-to-drive-into-the-lane-there-should-be-a-foul-on-them-somewhere”. So in essence, always give the benefit of the doubt for the home team and none of that for the opposing team, in fact let’s give them a few violations, three seconds, travelling and such.

If you don’t believe me, at least watch the game winning last shot by Pau Gasol, with 0.5 of a second left.

Don’t tell me that if that was the home team, there should have been a foul and an and-one (one more free throw).

Look at two OK players “holding” him and also Durant on the right, behind the back and holding down Artest. It’s a good thing it wasn’t reversed or we might have seen those types of calls too, which we have seen called on the visiting team all through-out game 6.



Although, I do not blame the referees, they are indeed doing their best, but Commissioner Stern, what do you say about all this? Don’t you think teams can now challenge more calls and have the referees review more plays like what they do in other major leagues?

Anyway, Oklahoma Thunder great series and we are expecting next year will even be better and Kevin Durant will still be way up there with the Lebron Jameses, the Carmelo Anthonys, the Dwayne Wades, the Kobe Bryants, and the Dirk Nowitzkis of the NBA.

And for the Lakers, they have to contend with the fans of the Jazz in Utah and hopefully not much of the same home cooking as we saw in Oklahoma.

Calling David Stern again.


Game 1 at LA (Visiting team even had the edge in both FTs and PFs)

Free Throws (FTs)   Home Team 22 Visitor 24

Personal Fouls (PFs)   Home Team 27 Visitor 21

Game 2 at LA (Visiting team even had the edge in FTs, Home court slight edge on PFs)

FTs   Home Team 32 Visitor 33

PFs   Home Team 30 Visitor 26

Game 3 at OK (Home team had the edge in both FTs and PFs)

FTs   Home Team 34 Visitor 12

PFs   Home Team 19 Visitor 26

Game 4 at OK (Home team had the edge in both FTs and PFs)

FTs   Home Team 48 Visitor 28

PFs   Home Team 23 Visitor 30

Game 5 at LA (Home team had slight edge in both FTs and PFs)

FTs   Home Team 31 Visitor 24

PFs   Home Team 19 Visitor 25

Game 6 at OK (Home team had the edge in FTs and slight edge in PFs)

FTs   Home Team 31 Visitor 14

PFs   Home Team 19 Visitor 21

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