I’m Blind. I’m Deaf. I Wanna Be A Ref.

Now before I begin my tirade, let me just say this: The Milwaukee Bucks did deserve to lose last night. They hung in there valiantly for three quarters, but at the end of the day just couldn’t get the job done. Quite simply, they were just handled by a much more talented group of basketball players. In fact, my main criticism of the game (which I’ll be getting to in a moment) probably had absolutely no bearing on who came out victorious. Probably.

There. Now that I have that out of the way: Fuck the referees of the National Basketball Association.
In case you’re wondering what I’m referring to, let me give you the play by play (along with my own personal opinion) of how things went down last night at the end of the 1st quarter.

1. After a missed shot attempt by Miami, the ball seemingly comes to rest in the space between the rim and the backboard.
My opinion: A slightly odd occurrence, but not unheard of

2. Lebron James jumps for the ball in an effort to grab the offensive rebound.
My opinion: Totally normal occurrence

3. Before Lebron comes down with it, the ref declares the ball dead, resulting in a jump ball.
My opinion: A questionable call, but could’ve easily been called a live or dead ball

4. Mr. James, unhappy with the decision, frustratingly screams and pouts like a little bitch
My opinion: A bit of an overreaction that was seemingly directed at the ref

5. The ref, believing Lebron’s rage is directed toward his call, issues the almighty King James a technical foul.
My opinion: Perhaps a slight overreaction, but definitely merited

6. A stunned Mr. James runs to the ref and apparently explains that his strong words were directed at himself and not the official.
My opinion: I’m not sure if this exact tactic has been utilized, but it is pretty much standard procedure for an NBA player to dispute just about any call they don’t agree with

7. The referee reverses the call and takes the technical foul away from Lebron James.
My opinion: WHAT THE FUCK?!?

In the 20 plus years I have been watching basketball, I have never once seen or heard of an NBA ref issuing a technical foul and then completely rescinding it to a “no foul” ruling. I guess they don’t call him King James for nothing.

I’m aware that the game of basketball is filled with a plethora of questionable and outright terrible calls, but to me this is on a different level. When I was a kid, I was a huge Michael Jordan fan. Inevitably, someone told me about what came to be known as “The Jordan Step.” (For those unaware, “The Jordan Step” was the occasional extra half-step or so that Michael Jordan would sometimes take while driving to the rim. Typically, the refs did not call travelling when “The Jordan Step” was taken.) After seeing that, it became painfully obvious that referees in just about every sport will turn the occasional blind-eye to penalties and fouls committed by marquee players. It’s something that fans have come to expect as a part of the game.

Yesterday’s blown call however, was a horse of a different color because a foul was actually issued. The ref could’ve easily looked the other way and let Lebron throw his little tantrum without consequence, but he didn’t. He clearly gave the signal for a technical foul on James, and once you do that there’s no going back…or so I thought.

I have no idea what King James did or said to that referee to get him to reverse that call, and guessing what it may have been just pisses me off more. All I know is that he talked the Bucks out of a free throw attempt (that they probably would’ve missed) and a possession. Also, let’s not forget the fact that Lebron also weasled his way out of the automatic fine given to any player receiving a technical foul in the playoffs.

It’s a safe assumption to say that just about everyone counted the Bucks out against the Heat in this series. But despite how out-matched Milwaukee was, I thought they would at least get a fair shake at taking down the defending champs. Obviously, that is not the case.

Tomorrow the Miami Heat will come to Milwaukee for Game 3. And seeing as Game 4 is also in the Brew City on Sunday, I would assume the team will be staying in town through the weekend. So if anyone happens to see Lebron, Wade, or Bosh out on the town….buy them a drink. In fact, buy them 10. We need all the help we can get.

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One Response to “I’m Blind. I’m Deaf. I Wanna Be A Ref.”

  1. Dave Witkowski Says:

    You do have to remember that this is the league that has some of the ex-refs in federal prison currently…

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