Originally posted on The Sports Bank  |  Last updated 5/8/12

I have had it with NBA officials in the playoffs. The league is softening up to protect stars and I don’t like it one bit. It’s hard to watch a game when there are nearly 50 fouls called per game. The playoffs are about letting defensive players get away with more, not about giving the stars more “star treatment”. I understand that the NBA is a star-driven league. It’s easier to fire a coach than it is to trade a star player. But what I have seen so far has been ridiculous and I have a feeling that it’s only going to get worse.

It started the first day of the playoffs. The New York Knicks and Miami Heat were playing Game 1 down in Miami. In the second quarter of that game, the Heat took only 15 shots that quarter. However, they managed to take 20 free-throws in that same quarter, en-route to outscoring the Knicks 30-13 in the quarter. Knicks’ center Tyson Chandler was called for a flagrant foul on LeBron James when Chandler leaned into a pick that blindsided James. How in the world is a screen a flagrant foul now? Is it because James was the one that got screened and acted like he just got in a car accident? James is nearly 260 pounds, so how the hell is a man of that size and strength going to act like that? If anything, James should have been called for a technical foul for being a dumbass. Oh, the Knicks were called for 26 fouls in the game while the Heat was only called for 17. The free-throw disparity was in Miami’s favor as well (33 att. to 11 att.).

Now the officials won’t allow players to trash-talk. What do you think they are going to do? Fight each other and risk suspensions? Last night, Chris Paul and Dante Cunningham got technicals for bumping into each other. I mean are you kidding me? What is this league coming to? The refs won’t allow anything to happen anymore. Nearly everything is a foul when a player either screams or misses a layup. Blake Griffin has become the biggest flopper in the NBA. [Paul] also does a great job at flopping. It seems like the refs aren’t calling games straight down-the-middle, like they are favoring the favorite or home team. The stars get all the calls and it’s hurting the quality of the game. I don’t blame people if they don’t like watching the game anymore because there is never any “flow”. I enjoy watching tempers come to a boil, as long as it doesn’t get out of control. If and once it gets out of control, then I am fine with the refs stepping in. The refs are there to make sure there is a good pace to the game and to keep players in line. But that doesn’t mean you follow the rulebook to a T. You have to call the game fair and even.

It would be nice if the refs would just let the players control and decide the game.

After all, people pay their hard-earned money to come see the players play.

They don’t come to watch the officials blow their whistle 50 times a game.

Figure it out.

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