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Blog Entry

No roundhouse from Rondo

Posted on: April 29, 2009 8:19 pm
 
CHICAGO -- I think the NBA got this exactly right. I think.

I'm not going to waste valuable time debating Dwight Howard's suspension; that one was easy. "Pretty cut and dried," Stu Jackson, the NBA's vice president of operations, said on a conference call with several reporters Wednesday afternoon. Jackson also revealed a piece of information that proves that NBA's system of reviewing every call and non-call actually works. None of the three officials actually saw Howard's lightning quick but blatant elbow that hit Samuel Dalembert in the head. Had they seen it, by rule it would've called for an automatic ejection. Since they didn't, that's why no flagrant foul was called, and it's why Howard wasn't ejected. Upon review, the NBA got that one right. But even the WWE could've gotten that one right.

The interesting case is Rondo, and it provides an especially delicious opportunity for debate. Not only did it happen on the same night, but it also provided another fertile debating point. This was a little man fouling a giant man, whereas the Howard incident was a giant picking on someone his own size.

Technically, the relative size of the players involved in a potentially flagrant foul shouldn't matter. But referees are human, and humans have to make decisions based on their experience and their ability to see something happening extremely fast. The most interesting point Jackson made came when he described the criteria for determining whether a foul crossed the line between a hard foul and a flagrant foul.

"In terms of the criteria that we use to evaluate a flagrant foul, penalty one, generally we like to consider whether or not there was a windup, an appropriate level of impact, and a follow through," Jackson said. "And with this foul, we didnt see a windup, nor did he follow through. And so for that reason, we’re not going to upgrade this foul to a flagrant foul, penalty one."

Jackson described Rondo's foul on the Bulls' Brad Miller -- an open-handed blow to the head which resulted in Miller missing a game-tying layup with two seconds left in overtime Tuesday night -- as a "basketball play." He said the league determined that Rondo was "going for the ball after a blown defensive assignment by the Celtic team." That's exactly what I saw at the game. Now I'm in Chicago, and when the local newscasts show the play in frame-by-frame slow motion, it drives home the point that Rondo realized he had no play on the ball and simply hit whatever he could -- that being Miller's face.

He didn't do it maliciously, and as Jackson said, he didn't wind up as if throwing a punch, nor did he follow through on the blow. Whereas Howard's play was blatant, Rondo's was borderline. It could've gone either way. The league made a reasonable choice, and backed its on-floor officials on this one. This is an important point. Had the foul been upgraded to a flagrant, it might've opened the door for the Bulls to file a protest because they would've been entitled to possession after the flagrant. The last thing this crazy and suddenly violent series would need is a protest. But more to the point, the officiating crews for Games 6 and 7 (if necessary) are going to have to have control of the action. There cannot be any outside influence hanging over the action on the floor, or chaos will ensue.

I don't know -- and Jackson didn't say -- if that factored into the league's decision. I also don't know for sure if the league made the technically correct decision on Rondo. But it made the right one.




Comments

Since: Aug 25, 2008
Posted on: April 29, 2009 10:47 pm
 

No roundhouse from Rondo

The NBA probably did get it right, but Chicago now HAS to retaliate.  If they don't, they really deserve to lose.  Someone else mentioned that this is like hitting a batter after your player has been hit.  Or at the very least a brush back.  But in this case, if they don't do something they will be recognized as weak and cowardly.  I'm not sure I would clothesline him right away, but some opportune time during the game, Rondo, Pierce or Allen need to be fouled very, very hard.  A foul that the Celtics won't forget. 

Now, let's see if the Bulls have the guts to stand up for their teammates.



Since: Feb 14, 2008
Posted on: April 29, 2009 10:42 pm
 

No roundhouse from Rondo

The NBA got it exactly right.  You can see that there was intent and contact on a thrown elbow.  That is pretty simple to see and it absolutely calls for a suspension.  The Rondo incident was a bit tougher to call.  He didn't go up in the first place with the intent to hit Brad Miller in the jaw.  He didn't follow through, but he did make contact obviously.  Stuff like this happens.  It's not a conspiracy theory to avoid a protest of the game.  That was just ludicrous.  But I will agree that it was borderline.  But to call a flagrant in that situation, you'd have to absolutely have to kill someone almost.  I thought it was a hard foul sure.  But not flagrant. 


jimigahagan
Since: Mar 22, 2009
Posted on: April 29, 2009 10:07 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator




Since: Feb 12, 2007
Posted on: April 29, 2009 9:23 pm
 

No roundhouse from Rondo

It is convenient that the leagues position officially cancels out the opportunity for a protest in both games. In the Celtics game, they backed the on-court decision, and in the Magic game, they said that the officials did not see the act, so if the 76ers protest, it will all fall back on "the refs didnt see it". I am not a conspiracy theorist, but the NBA put a pretty good wet blanket on a possible issue.




Since: Apr 14, 2007
Posted on: April 29, 2009 9:21 pm
 

No roundhouse from Rondo

How can you call this man a Celtics Homer?! Have uo read his piece on how the Celtica are on their way out and that the series is the bulls to win or lose. A piece he wrote after game two if i'm not mistaken. I f anything I got the impression he wants the Bulls to win.



Since: Jun 4, 2008
Posted on: April 29, 2009 9:08 pm
 

No roundhouse from Rondo

 I think the NBA got this exactly right. I thinkof course you do HOMER

I'm not going to waste valuable time debating 's suspension; that one was easy. "Pretty cut and dried," Stu Jackson, the NBA's vice president of operations, said on a conference call with several reporters Wednesday afternoon. Jackson also revealed a piece of information that proves that NBA's system of reviewing every call and non-call actually works. None of the three officials actually saw Howard's lightning quick but blatant elbow that hit in the head. Had they seen it, by rule it would've called for an automatic ejection. Since they didn't, that's why no flagrant foul was called, and it's why Howard wasn't ejected. Upon review, the NBA got that one right. But even the WWE could've gotten that one right. of course you wont, Orlando won the game


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