HoopsHype Referees rumors

November 10, 2014 Updates

The league has gone to great pains to say that the Replay Center, which gets direct game feeds from each of the NBA's 29 arenas, serves to supplement the referees, not do their job for them -- though it has not shuttered the notion that improved technology in future years might make using the Replay Center for the final decision possible. "Our feeling was the following: The Center is not here to replace the official," NBA Vice President of Operations Rod Thorn said Saturday. "We try to help the ref make the right call by giving him the best angle possible. His job is to call the game. At this particular time, that's the best approach for us. But as you know, in the modern NBA, we study everything. At some point in time, if we feel there's something that can help, then we'll address it." NBA.com

At any rate, using the Replay Center was not a topic of negotiation with the officials before the start of the season. The league says it wants the game in the officials' hands, and that using the Replay Center doesn't change the referees' job description to the point where it needed to be collectively bargained. "Our feeling is we have the right to do that, because we set what you [the referees] do and don't do, in essence," Thorn said. "We don't look at that as a collective bargaining issue at all. Obviously we worked very closely with the officials in trying to implement this. We listen if they have any advice for us or have any questions about this. But the NBA has implemented it, and we'll go from there." NBA.com

The inner ring of the RC (I would tire quickly continually typing "Replay Center") has three stations, manned by the three Replay Managers that oversee the Center. Those are senior league executives -- including Borgia, Executive Vice President of Referee Operations Mike Bantom and Senior Vice President of Basketball Operations Kiki Vandeweghe. Former NBA referee Bob Delaney also serves as a Replay Manager. There is also a PR person on staff every night to send out tweets via the league's NBA official handle (@NBA) any time there is an official review. Everyone who watches games on a given night works on staggered schedules. No one is pulling a 10-12 hour day, Borgia says, because tired people make mistakes. NBA.com

November 7, 2014 Updates

Hayward pulled a Hayward in the first half when he timed a James layup attempt and blocked it from behind. The Cavs though it was goaltending. The superstar even said he was told by an NBA ref at halftime that was the case. So, Hayward? “It was close,” he admitted. “They didn’t call it a goaltend. That’s all that matters, right?” Hayward wasn’t about to give any Cavs a chance to block his shot on the other end. He hurried back on offense and finished the highlight sequence off with a thundering dunk. Deseret News

November 5, 2014 Updates
November 4, 2014 Updates

Rivers on Monday was queried as to whether he believes his players are being too demonstrative on the court with the referees. There was no diplomacy in his response. “Probably, yeah,” he said ahead of his team’s game against the Utah Jazz at Staples Center. “Well, (Sunday), I think as a team we were, for sure. We’ve got to get to playing. You know, I’ll do all the antics if they need me to do them. “But I just think the players have to play. I just find it very difficult to play and ref. I think that’s really hard to do. I think we’ve gotta pick one or the other.” Los Angeles Daily News

November 2, 2014 Updates

Pierce needlessly argued with officials near the end of the first half, and got himself ejected from the game, seemingly on purpose. Washington went on to win 108-97, but can’t be at all pleased with the way Pierce conducted himself in this one. NBCSports.com

Pierce, attempting to halt a fast break, was called for a clear-path foul on Knight. The ruling was upheld after review, but Pierce still disagreed and voiced his displeasure. He was immediately given a technical foul, but continued to protest and was given a second technical, triggering an automatic ejection. Pierce finished his Wizards home debut with two points, missing all three of his shots to go along with four assists and three rebounds. Washington Post

October 23, 2014 Updates
October 16, 2014 Updates
August 29, 2014 Updates

Drummond also expressed appreciation Thursday for the FIBA international regulations of play. Often a victim of NBA offensive goaltending rules, the Pistons center cited a more lax policy with FIBA — allowing offensive players to touch the ball inside the cylinder of the rim. “The FIBA game is great for me; I can really use that rule to our benefit,” he said. But the switch from NBA to FIBA has also required some adjustments. Besides learning to play with new teammates, Drummond said the reduced physicality of international league play is a challenge NBA players have to adapt to. “The refs just watch out more for certain things to make sure players don’t get hurt,” he said. Detroit Free Press

August 25, 2014 Updates

After 39 years as an NBA referee, Bavetta announced this week he’ll be retiring at age 74. Jazz fans will need to find someone else to upbraid. But they’ll never forget him. He’s the referee that waved off Jazz guard Howard Eisley’s 3-point basket in Game 6 of the NBA Finals against Chicago, ruling it was after the shot clock had expired. He later allowed Bulls’ guard Ron Harper’s 2-point basket to count, though that time the shot clock had expired in the fourth quarter of a tie game. Bavetta was also on the court when Michael Jordan bumped Bryon Russell before scoring the game-winning basket. Conspiracy wonks have been analyzing it ever since. So naturally you would think Jerry Sloan would be doing cartwheels. His officiating nemesis is history. “I thought he was a good ref,” the former Jazz coach said this week. “Anybody who can stay with something that long has to be good at what they do; those guys are hard to come by. He stood the test of time; it’s not an easy job.” Deseret News

The catcalls were never personal to Bavetta, though Jazz fans wanted them to be. Sloan said he didn’t think Bavetta’s calls/no-calls in 1998 were driven by an agenda and he doesn’t dwell on it. “I think you’ve got to put it behind you and go about your business. To be so concerned about something like that — you have no control over it whatsoever — so you just have to hope your team gets the benefit of the doubt,” Sloan said. Deseret News

The rigors of travel especially this past winter, holidays spent separated from family, nights away from his wife Paulette and their 460-acre ranch in Ocala, Florida, it all took a toll on the 74-year-old Bavetta. "I'm healthy," Bavetta said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "I feel at peace with making the decision. I've been very blessed and fortunate to be part of the NBA family for 39 years. They've provided a great livelihood for me and my family. And moving forward, it will always be part of my DNA. For so long, 'I'm Dick Bavetta, an NBA referee' has just come out. Now it's time for 'I'm Dick Bavetta, former NBA referee.'" USA Today Sports

What he will likely miss most is being one of the NBA's de facto ambassadors. Bavetta prided himself on being personable; after all, he was easily recognizable by NBA fans. So when they would stop him to chat, Bavetta never minded posing for a quick photo or telling a brief story. "I was never the star of the show," Bavetta said. "The stars were the players. But you never know what lives you'll be able to touch." USA Today Sports

August 23, 2014 Updates

As he and his wife, Paulette, now drive through the desolate back roads of Central Florida, he couldn't be more removed from his work as a calming legislator of tall men prone to emotional outbursts. He will spend time embracing the quiet at Old Melody, listening to his collection of classic "Doo-Wop" hits on one of his three jukeboxes. Bavetta retired recently at 74, ending one of the most enduring, fascinating and fruitful careers in the NBA. Orlando Sentinel

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