HoopsHype Tim Donaghy rumors

May 31, 2011 Updates

Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy gained notoriety when he was infamously charged with betting on games in which he officiated. Almost four years after his resignation from the NBA, Donaghy is now questioning the credibility of today's refs. The referee recently released a video analyzing one of the final plays in Game Four of the Eastern Conference final between the Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat. The particular play in question takes place with 30 seconds remaining in overtime with the Heat leading by four. LeBron James briefly drives before knocking down a shot over Luol Deng, practically giving Miami the win. Donaghy claims that Lebron moves his right pivot foot twice, which would constitute a travel. The play went uncalled, and the former ref questioned why TNT commentators Steve Kerr and Reggie Miller, along with the officials, did not notice anything. The Miami Heat would eventually win the game and the series. NESN.com

May 12, 2011 Updates

Some will say both came forward for fame and a way to promote their books, but it did take courage knowing that many would not believe them. Donaghy, unlike Canseco, came forward because he realized what he did was a mistake. As Donaghy told the Victor and Matt podcast show on RadioExiles.com, “I don’t have any doubt that my image has changed since I wrote my book. People believed what I had to say. I think there is a difference between Jose Canseco and myself because I don’t think Jose feels what he did was wrong, in regards to steroids. I certainly feel what I did, getting involved in gambling and gambling on NBA games, with the position I was in was certainly wrong.” Tucson Citizen

“Life is slowly, but surely getting a little better,” Donaghy also told Victor and Matt. “I’m getting in the lives of my daughters. I’m also doing a lot of blogging, writing and radio work for a sports handicapper who advises people who to bet just like a stock broker would. I am certainly not betting on games. Never going to get involved doing that again.” Tucson Citizen

April 20, 2011 Updates

Tim Donaghy joined ESPN Radio Dallas with Galloway and Company to discuss his reaction to Crawford being assigned the game, why it’s not a coincidence the Mavs are just 3-16 in playoff games reffed by Danny Crawford, the story he tells in his book about the situation, why it could be different now that he’s called attention to it and the general performance this season by NBA officials. His reaction when he saw Danny Crawford was officiating Game 2 in Dallas: “You think that the league would put him on a game maybe in another series, but to put him in this situation, teams like that, for some reason they still enjoy tormenting Mark Cuban a little bit.” Sports Radio Interviews

Could it be that it was just coincidence that the Mavs were 2-16 in games reffed by Crawford before Tuesday night?: “No, absolutely not. I think that would be absolutely impossible to put that as a mere coincidence. It’s no secret that when Ed Rush was supervisor of officials, he had a hatred for Mark Cuban and Danny Crawford was one of Rush’s right-hand guys. So he carried out what he thought would be in the best interest of him being in the good graces with the supervisor of officials. Some guys enjoy sticking it to Mark; it’s no secret.” Sports Radio Interviews

Reflecting on the state of officiation overall in the NBA: “I’ve watched a couple games the last couple nights and there’s pivotal calls that are taking place at pivotal times that are just flat-out wrong that are just standing out. They’re bad enough they’re taking place during the game, but in the last two or three minutes of the fourth quarter, it just buries teams. … It takes the credibility further away from the league.” Sports Radio Interviews

March 4, 2011 Updates

Griffin, who surprisingly did not respond to requests through his publisher for an interview and did not answer questions emailed to him, comes down hard on the side of Battista, and the allegations against Donaghy are serious. Here are some, but not all: 1. Donaghy was a racist who was jealous that black players were making huge money and he wasn’t. 2. Donaghy often talked of killing his wife. 3. Donaghy, it was widely believed in the betting community, was fixing NBA games that he worked. covers.com

Curiously, Griffin says that Donaghy was not interviewed for the book because the former ref lacked credibility, and Donaghy this week returned fire: “I don't plan on reading this sensationalistic and fictional portrayal of the past events,” said Donaghy, who has read media reports about the book. “There is a place on bookshelves for fiction, and books describing situations where the author's actions were clouded by sustained drug use fall under that category.” covers.com

February 20, 2011 Updates

Before All-Star Saturday night, David Stern met the media, and I asked him about the book. His response: I have not read the new book or seen it yet, although I'm happy with each All Star Weekend or Finals to present an opportunity for a convicted felon to issue yet another tome on his misdeeds. So we'll see if there's anything new suggested, Mr. Pedowitz will be asked to continue to review it as we have with each one that has been published, because we want to make sure that we get to the bottom of it all. But right now, I don't have any more information other than I know you always confirm your sources; so I commend you to confirming the convicted felon's sources. Stern does a bit of taunting there, saying, essentially, "look who your source is!" And indeed Griffin's book was written in collaboration with convicted gambler James Battista. ESPN.com

Nevertheless, the source argument may not serve Stern this time. The predominant story, that Donaghy did not fix games originated with ... Tim Donaghy himself. Despite what Donaghy will tell you, that version of events has not been rigorously vetted by the FBI (to whom it was tangential) or the NBA (whose investigators watched a tiny fraction of the games in question, and even then found some causes for concern). The three conspirators tell a story of Donaghy picking at an unheard-of rate in games he refereed, which is supported by betting line movement and an ocean of other factors, including the crumbling of Donaghy's version of events when put to the test and the utter lack of any confirmation of Donaghy's story from anybody in the know. ESPN.com

February 17, 2011 Updates

Nearly four years later, it's over. Investigations have been concluded. The FBI has weighed in. Reports have been published. Conspirators have been convicted. Addictions (to gambling in one case, drugs in another) have been treated. Time has been served. Oversight has been tightened. Even the media chatter -- that maelstrom of oddsmakers, the FBI and the mob -- has slowed to a trickle. What's more, NBA TV ratings are through the roof, the audience is global and growing, a new owner-friendly collective bargaining agreement is in the works and All-Star weekend is here. It's hard to remember, now, that a ruffian like Donaghy ever had a shot to bring down the mighty NBA. ESPN.com

December 7, 2010 Updates

Most of all, Stern manipulated the 2008 All-Star weekend in New Orleans into his own propaganda machine. After the ’07 All-Star debacle in Las Vegas and the Tim Donaghy scandal, Stern turned New Orleans into a photo-op weekend. He piled his players onto buses with sportswriters and drove them to flooded wards to bang a nail, plant a bush, run a paint brush over a wall. Stern poured it on thick, too. As he wore a T-shirt and jeans at an All-Star weekend event at an elementary school, he didn’t like the way a photographer cramped him as his wife tried to join him in painting a mural. “I came here to work, not for a photo-op,” Stern sniffed. Even some of Stern’s underlings charged with promoting that weekend became sheepish on how the league could make such a limited financial investment and run around and take such credit. Yahoo! Sports

August 1, 2010 Updates

Instead, he finds himself embroiled in a bitter dispute with his Largo-based publisher. He said she has refused to give him information about the financial success of his book, Personal Foul. She said Donaghy threatened her, mentioning mob connections. On top of that, she said, she has information that Donaghy may have committed more serious crimes. St. Petersburg Times

Donaghy said he broke things off because Vercher tried to tack on additional costs and wouldn't provide him with financial details. Vercher's side of the story: Donaghy called her office incessantly, became increasing hostile, demanded money and made veiled threats. "Mr. Donaghy explained to me he had connections in the mob and the Gambino crime family and that they had an active member near me," said Vercher, 33. Donaghy vehemently denied ever saying anything like that. "She's using tabloid tactics to try to say I'm a bad person because the bottom line is she has not given me a full and accurate account of the profits and proceeds for Personal Foul," said Donaghy, 43, who repeated a similar mantra about 20 times during an interview at a Panera Bread, near his Sarasota home. St. Petersburg Times

Donaghy's Tampa attorney, Nick Mooney, said Vercher failed to provide the government with a complete accounting, either. Vercher said she is cooperating fully with the U.S. Attorney's Office, which refused to comment on the case. Both have also shared accusations about each other with the U.S. Attorney's Office. "Basically, she's written this 20-page dissertation as to how terrible Tim Donaghy has been all of his life," said Mooney, a former assistant statewide prosecutor and former assistant state attorney for the Sixth Judicial Circuit. St. Petersburg Times

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