I, for one, am of the belief that basketball would be a much better game if it was self-officiated.
We grow up playing self-reffed pickup games and it only fuels our competitive desire, while simultaneously teaching us to know right from wrong.
If we travel, we call our own travel.
If we commit a foul, we call out our foul.
If we get ticky-tack hacked on the wrist, we know not to say anything. Everyone understands that weenie fouls don’t exist.
It’s a democratic environment, too. If there is any disagreement on the matter at hand, the matter at hand is decided upon by majority rule. If debates cannot be settled immediately, you shoot for it. A made basket means you win the argument. A miss means you lose. It’s the proverbial “ball don’t lie” situation. Rasheed Wallace had it right.
Basketball referees only detract from an otherwise pure game. They tend to be more visible and more vocal than officials in other sports, and as a result you have guys like Joey Crawford (the ref from the above video) who enjoy their role as showmen, as the center of attention.
Officials are supposed to be robots, more or less, who objectively call the game.
But the fact is officials are human, just like the rest of us, and cannot be counted on to remain wholly objective in every situation. Humans are emotional creatures, and as a result that leads to human subjectivity from time to time.
Refs, like anyone else, can let their emotions get the best of them every now and then and allow those emotions to influence their body of work. That happens most frequently in a sport like basketball, where an intimate environment allows for constant interaction between the officials, the players, the coaches, and even the fans. That doesn’t exist to nearly the same degree in sports like baseball or football.
You’d never hear me say this about any other sport besides basketball, where the presence of officials slows down the action and invites deception, best exemplified by the act of flopping. Would flopping ever fly in a self-officiated game? Only if you like getting punched in the face.
Anyways, I thought you all might enjoy a video that only serves to point out that basketball officials are not a necessity in what is otherwise a fantastic game. The fact that a pompous bastard like Joey Crawford isn’t man enough to reconsider his blatantly erroneous misinterpretation of the rulebook in the context of such an important game is a disgrace to the sport and to athletics in general.
And on top of that, I took you through that whole rant without one mention of Tim Donaghy. He’s the icing. The rest is just cake.