Referees Are Too Old

Nuggets Mavericks Basketball

In yesterday’s game against the Denver Nuggets, Dallas’s Anthony Wright tried to foul Carmelo Anthony in the final seconds since the team had a foul to give. No official blew his whistle and Carmelo made a game-winning three-pointer, giving the Nuggets a three games to none lead in the series.

There were 61 fouls called in the game, and yet the most important one was not called at all. After the game, the NBA admitted the missed call. “At the end of the Dallas-Denver game this evening, the officials missed an intentional foul committed by Antoine Wright on Carmelo Anthony, just prior to Anthony’s three-point basket,” said NBA President of league and basketball operations, Joel Litvin.

Wow. That is a bad call to screw up. Maverick players were enraged after the game and owner Mark Cuban pushed a camera man as he left the stadium. Doesn’t such a horrible call undermine the entire idea of sports? Every day, I hear about another official who blew a decisive call in a game. Maybe it’s because more games are getting closer or players are finding ways to push the rules, but it seems like there are more tough calls than ever before.

The playoffs are supposed to decide a champion, but if one team is getting an advantage via officiating, than how can it be fair? A slight advantage is one thing, but when a game is decided such as in the Mavs-Nuggets game, that is not right. Continue reading “Referees Are Too Old”

Can Anyone Stop The Cavs?

Hawks Cavaliers BasketballThe Cleveland Cavaliers dismantled the Atlanta Hawks last night, 99-72, in what will likely be a four-game sweep. This win was impressive on so many levels. Before even getting to LeBron and the steady offense of the Cavs, let’s look at the defense, which is what really wins championships.

Atlanta entered yesterday’s game averaging 87.3 points per game in their first round series. So holding them to 72 points is very impressive, especially considering the Hawks didn’t shoot that badly (28 of 64 – 43.8%). However, the Cavs forced 17 turnovers, including 12 steals. The game was close at halftime at 49-44, but then Cleveland amped up the defense. Atlanta only had 28 points in the entire second half. Wow.

We saw with the Celtics last year that defense wins championships. With Cleveland holding opponents to just 76.8 points per game, they are well on their way to bringing an NBA Championship home.

Now, to the part of the Cavs that really is anyone watches. LeBron James. He just won his first MVP award and continues to prove just how good he is. He played just 34 minutes in the win yesterday and scored 34 easy points. He shot just 20 shots, making 12 of them, and was 8 of 9 from the free throw line. He grabbed 10 rebounds, dished out 3 assists, and had 4 steals. All in a night’s work. Best of all, he made it look easy. Continue reading “Can Anyone Stop The Cavs?”

Howard Deserves The Suspension

Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard was suspended by the NBA for game 6 of the series between the Magic and Philadelphia 76ers after Howard delivered a forearm/elbow to the head of Samuel Dalembert. It was a vicious swing, instigated by Dalembert’s push in the back on Howard, but either way, Howard’s was much more dangerous.

Dalembert delivered a slight push on Howard while the two fought for a rebound, but after the play had ended, the Magic center reacted violently. He smacked Dalembert across the head and trotted up the court as if nothing was happened. The refs assessed him a technical foul for which he should be thankful, because replays show it as a clear flagrant-two foul, an automatic ejection.

Unfortunately for Magic fans, that means that they will be without their superstar for game 6 and will almost certainly be heading home for a game seven. Without Howard, Orlando has no hopes of beating the 76ers on their home court. Howard brought it upon himself though and has no one else to blame. The NBA made the right call. He should be thankful that the officials in game five didn’t. Continue reading “Howard Deserves The Suspension”