Blog Entry

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:30 am
LOS ANGELES -- An NBA playoff series doesn't begin until you have a good ol' referee conspiracy.

Conspiracy theory, I should add.

And a deeply flawed one.

Nonetheless, we're in for an interesting day in the Los Angeles area Thursday now that a member of the Nuggets has told the Denver Post -- anonymously, of course -- that he believes the Lakers bought their 103-94 victory over the Nuggets in Game 5 Wednesday night for the very reasonable price of $50,000.

For those keeping score at home, that's how much Lakers coach Phil Jackson and the Lakers paid in fines for complaining about the officiating after Game 4.

"The Lakers paid $50,000 to win that game," the anonymous Nuggets player told the Post. "They got their money's worth."

The player did not allow his name to be used, for fear of retribution from the league, the Post reported. But let's be fair. The player didn't allow his name to be used because he didn't want to pay a fine himself for such a salacious comment. If I were Nuggets owner Stan Kroenke, I'd make it my business to find out who said that, and deduct the inevitable fine that will be assessed to the Nuggets from his paycheck.

If it was Kenyon Martin, for example, I'd ask him to forfeit $10,000 of his game check for each of the nine shots he missed from the field.

If it was Nene, for instance, I'd ask him to pay up for each of the 33 points Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom combined to score in the paint that he was supposed to have been defending.

It doesn't matter who said it, really. What matters is that the Nuggets have resorted to a different sort of dirty trick than the one that raised Jackson's ire after Game 4. This was worse than Dahntay Jones tripping Kobe Bryant in that game. This reeked of sour grapes.

The Nuggets were called for 30 personal fouls in Game 5 Wednesday night. The Lakers were called for 22. The resulting disparity of five free throws wasn't enough to account for the nine-point difference on the scoreboard. But that's not the point.

I don't pretend to have watched all 52 fouls called in the game, nor have I gone frame-by-frame through all the fouls that weren't called. And as busy as I'll be Thursday getting reaction from the various parties involved, I won't have time. But that's not the point. To the naked eye, it was a liberally officiated game at both ends of the floor by referees Monty McCutcheon, Ron Garretson, and Tom Washington. Obvious contact in the act of shooting and/or driving to the basket was ignored at both ends.

Before the game, Jackson playfully commented on his $25,000 fine -- an additional $25,000 was assessed to the Lakers -- by saying, "I'm a gardener. I like planting seeds. Constantly."

After the game, Nuggets coach George Karl channeled his inner Stan Van Gundy, lamenting the fact that playoff games have turned into a contest of which coach can gripe the most in hopes of influencing the officials.

"I'm not going to get fined," said Karl, who proceeded to make comments that almost certainly will get him fined. "... It was a difficult whistle to play, no question about that. Every player in my locker room is frustrated, from guards to big guys. Look at the stat sheet. Gasol goes after at least 20 jump shots and 20 shots to the rim and gets one foul. Our big guys have 16. I don't know. Nene has six fouls; three or four of them don't exist. And it's frustrating when you take one of your big guys off the court for that many minutes.

"I think Stan Van Gundy says it right," Karl continued. "In the postgame, we're lobbying for the league to help us with the refereeing. And this is too good a series. It's too good of teams competing that we're sitting here just confused by the whistle."

I don't think the referees had anything to do with the Nuggets' 5-for-21 shooting in the fourth quarter. I don't think the referees had anything to do with Denver's four consecutive turnovers in the third, when the Lakers started making their move. But I disagree with one anonymous Nuggets player -- speaking for the entire locker room, apparently. We'll see Thursday, when the teams speak with the media before flying to Denver, if anybody backs him up.

My guess? It's going to be a costly day for both sides.
Category: NBA

Since: Sep 7, 2008
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:36 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

If this is true this has to be the most cowardly thing I have heard a player say in a very long time.  Please let's keep anonymous?  What a crock of you know what, I cannot stand the Thuggets and their double chinned coach.  This series honestly has been officiated more in Denver's favor than anything.  I mean I could on and on with examples but it comes down to Kobe not getting the calls that most call superstar treatment.  How many times did he drive the lane last night and get fouled?  Lebron would get those calls every single time.  Kobe gets pushed two handed in the back while jumping towards the basket, get's tripped, hit in the face by Melo um where was that flagrant?  Got hacked big time on the arm while dunking that alley oop yet Thuggets fans and now players are griping about the officiating?  I understand LA has had their own calls go their way but if people really want to break it down Denver has received some very good breaks in this series.  It's just so ironic how LA is called soft by Magic J and everyone else yet when they man up play hard and physical their either a dirty team or a team that got away with too much.  And what is lost in all of this is LA getting no respect for playing well.  Denver just needs to shut their mouths along with their fans who come up with silly pansie arse excuses.

Since: Jan 31, 2008
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:32 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

Now Ken Cheeseberger obviously is not fooling anyone with that false story about Nuggets accusing Lakers of buying a win.  He needs a job and has to manufacturer things to keep the action going.  Why don't some of these half-life sports writers get with the program and investigate how much the fix is in with the gambling and the NBA.  A lot of people I talk with think that is true.  And look at that Lakers/Rocket series, tell me the Rockets could really beat the Lakers, smells FIXED.  It is my opinion that the Lakers, NBA and Refs could have all made millions down at Vegas on those games.  Come on lets investigate the NBA and their players, and others to see if the fix is in.  It smells really bad!

Since: Mar 6, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:30 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

You are right, there is no question it's a lot harder than it looks.....that said, this is there job.  While it may look like they have just selected guys off the street who have only officiated for 10 years old, that should not be a very good comparison.  These guys are supposed to be phenomenally trained, best of the best refs for professional basketball.  I don't think it is unreasonable to think that you should be able to competently officiate games and not ruin it.  On the biggest stage in sports, good to great officiating is a reasonable expectation for the fans to have as well as the players and coaches.  Are they going to be perfect, of course not.  It also should not be a complete joke, which it seems to be more often than not.

I am not a fan of any of the teams left in the playoffs.  From my view, the game last night was not that poorly officiated.  I thought both teams had some legitimate gripes about no calls, and it looked like the refs were letting them play on both ends.  I am sure there were some bad calls but nothing too terrible.

On the flip side, the amount of calls Lebron gets, particularly at the end of games, is nothing short of appauling.  Every single game I watch, like clockwork, the refs just donate calls to Cleveland.  I actaully am a big fan of Lebron and don't like Orlando at all, and I am cheering really hard for Orlando strictly because the officiating has been so disgraceful.  I feel like Orlando is having to beat the Cavs and the refs every night if they want to win the game.

In the NFL, the officiating is pretty good.  In the NHL, the officiating is pretty good.  In MLB, the officiating is pretty good.  I just don't see how the NBA can or should be such a disgrace.

Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:28 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

First, I am a Laker fan.  I have been since 1970.  I still fear the Lakers may lose this series.  I would feel a whole lot better if I knew, as many of you so obviously do, that the officiating would make sure they win.  I have tried to see the favoritism in games but I have yet to see it.  I have seen calls not made that I thought should be, like when Kobe had the ball in the final minutes and the Denver player ran right into him bending him in two.  No call.  Stuff like that happens butI always see it go both ways.  I can't say the officiating is bad because I don't know if it is possible to officiate any better.  The game is fast, the views are blocked, everything is different from the floor.  I have seen the Lakers lose when I thought calls cost them the game.  If it were preordained that Kobe and LeBron would meet in the finals then I think the officiating is going to have to really stick their heads out in the Magic/Cavs series. 

Since: Aug 30, 2006
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:22 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

Bravo!   The NBA and ESPN must have at least one of 'their darlings' in the Finals.  ESPN, just opened their new LA studio right across the street from the Staples Center, so they can launch the 24 hour Kobe Channel coming soon to a cable network near you!!!!!!

Since: Mar 6, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:19 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

that actually is a great point.  there is no way these guys could actually dribble to half court by themselves.  It is a complex technique that only a few players in the world can ever truly master......

The officiating really has been horrific in the playoffs.  The worst, in my opinion, is Lebron.  They just donate calls to him every single game.  I like Lebron....he is a great player and a classy guy.  That said, I am cheering so hard for Orlando.  Not because I like Orlando, I am just infuriated by how bad the officiating is.  The refs need to call it the same for everyone.  It just doesn't make sense that the name on your jersey should dictate what is called.  It has gotten so bad that a lot of people I know don't even watch the NBA anymore.

They need to call it straight and let the best team win.  It really is bad for the league when every single press conference is about coaches going nuts on the officiating.  No, that is not why teams are losing.  However, it is so pathetic that whoever loses is always going to be upset about how incompetent and biased these refs are.

Since: May 6, 2009
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:18 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:08 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

So which are you, a Laker hater or a Denver fan? 

Since: Jul 21, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:07 pm

Try this on for size

All major league sports rely on someone else to call their fouls/miscues. Only the PGA (that I know of) requires tour players to call penalties on themselves when they break the rules. Imagine Kobe driving to the basket and elbowing an opponent out of the way (ok, I'm biased, I can imagine that  r-e-a-l  easy), scores two and a ref calls a foul on the defender...

But, no, the basket is waived off. "I fouled him, I created contact not the defender..."

Yeah right.  Instead we have thugs and whiners and floppers and muggers and elbow merchants.

And that is supposed to be compelling sports ...

Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: May 28, 2009 5:06 pm

Nuggets accuse Lakers of buying a win

If you no longer watch the NBA then isn't it a little strange that you would find yourself posting on an NBA article?  If you no longer watch the game then how is it youhave an opinion on how the refs call a game?  Second hand info from a friend?  I don't know, for some reason your post just struck me as something that brought up so many questions in my mind. 

The truth is we have both coaches sayng the other team is getting favored.  That right there says a ton.  If every call doesn't go against the Lakers then there is always someone saying the games are fixed.  Perhaps it just looks that way since both Cleveland and L.A. look like they are going to the finals.  What with the NBA touting the Kobe-LeBron match up you knew it was going to be fixed.  Oh wait, did someone forget to tell the refs who are officiating the Cleveland-Orlando series?  If the games were truly fixed then the refs would be doing a better job of covering it up.

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