NBA Officials Hurting the Game; Systemic in Nature

by Fred Pahlke | Posted on Saturday, April 25th, 2015

(Thursday night-Game 3, Pelicans host the Warriors in New Orleans) As I watched the great Stephan Curry rip a corner three at the buzzer in regulation to tie the playoff game, then get tackled by two New Orleans players immediately after the ball rolled off the fingers of the soon to be named MVP, I couldn’t believe my eyes. Where was the foul? How in sam hill did the Pelicans avoid the foul call and a game winning free throw that would have given Curry a four point play and the Warriors the win? Then I realized I was watching the NBA, the last second of a very important game, and the chicken poop officials that were on the floor calling the game.

I will not name the two officials in direct view of the play as NBA fans know who they were. And to be fair, I think most every NBA official would have made the same non-call. This problem is systemic in nature. The culture of the call has to change.


Stephen Curry hits a game-tying 3-pointer with less than 3 seconds left Thursday night to send the Warriors-Pelicans Game 3 to overtime, where Golden State prevailed 123-119 for a 3-0 series advantage. (Getty Images)


The two minute game report by the NBA tells us that the officials would have called a foul if Curry had not made the 3-pointer. What is that all about? He was fouled or he was not fouled and we all know, and the NBA has judged, he was fouled on the play. As other media has already stated, if a foul is committed, it should be called.

“He got tackled by two different players,” coach Steve Kerr said after the game. “I don’t understand it.”

The Association is noted for a lack of action by game officials, allowing the mugging of players on last second possessions that taint a particular game in a way that others call out the word “fixed”.  No, the NBA is not into that extreme stuff, but officials in the league need to be put on the carpet for the lack of making the correct decisive calls that make the game one of correctness. Time after time the NBA has allowed officials off the hook after making the game “controversial” with a non-call or the wrong call. Those two officials that were draped over that final shot by Curry should not be officiating any more play-off games this season, no matter how high up the ladder the NBA has them on the officials list. And a warning must be given to the other officials in the league that the game has to be called consistently from the tip at the beginning of the game through the last second on the clock in the 4th quarter. Incompetence in the form of official’s discretion has to stop. It has become an issue with this NBA fan and with fans in every NBA venue.

About the Author

Oklahoma native has viewed over 10,000 sporting events in his 61 years. A season ticket holder of the Oklahoma City Thunder and expert in both professional and college basketball and football. A graduate of Oklahoma City University. Elementary School Principal in the Oklahoma City Public Schools for 31 years.

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