Blog Entry

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

Posted on: October 29, 2009 3:51 pm
Edited on: October 29, 2009 4:48 pm
The NBA will investigate additional allegations by disgraced former referee Tim Donaghy that were scheduled for publication in a book that has been spiked by its publisher.

In the book excerpts, which have been published online, Donaghy offered more details of alleged game manipulation by other referees. The NBA and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York investigated Donaghy's initial claims and did not find anyone else culpable.

Elizabeth Ventura, the NBA's senior vice president of communications, issued the following statement to and other news outlets:

"In 2008 Mr. Donaghy's allegations were thoroughly investigated by the FBI and the U.S. Attorney's Office. We are reassured that the U.S. Government completed its investigation finding that the only criminal conduct was that of Mr. Donaghy.

"We take any question regarding the integrity of our game extremely seriously. At the time Mr. Donaghy’s crimes came to light, we appointed Lawrence B. Pedowitz, a former Chief of the Criminal Division in the U.S. Attorney's office of the Southern District of New York, to lead a comprehensive independent review of the NBA's officiating program. Mr. Pedowitz's review revealed that the NBA’s core values of neutrality and accountability were not compromised by anyone other than Mr. Donaghy.

"As with all allegations concerning the integrity of our officiating program, these latest assertions by Mr. Donaghy will be turned over to Mr. Pedowitz for a complete review."

Donaghy was sentenced to prison time in 2008 after pleading guilty to federal wire fraud charges. Donaghy was accused of betting on NBA games, including those he worked, and tipping off high-stakes gamblers with inside information.

UPDATE: Robert Nardoza, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office, declined to comment on whether federal authorities were re-opening their investigation. No criminal charges have been filed against any NBA employee other than Donaghy. "We saw the article," Nardoza said, referring to news that Donaghy's publisher had pulled the book amid fears of legal action. "Beyond that, I'm not going to comment."

Donaghy's tell-all, "Blowing the Whistle: The Culture of Fraud in the NBA," was scheduled for publication later this month by Triumph, a division of Random House. Despite news reports to the contrary, NBA spokesman Tim Frank said the league "never threatened a lawsuit or anything else."

In the excerpts, Donaghy cut a wide swath through the ranks of his former colleagues, naming names and offering details on how other officials allegedly manipulated games. Many of the details mirrored those he gave to federal prosecutors as part of his plea negotiation.

According to a person directly involved in the NBA's probe conducted by Pedowitz, all the referees named in the excerpts from Donaghy's manuscript were interviewed during the initial investigation -- in some cases, numerous times. 

“The National Basketball Referees Association is disappointed, but not surprised, with the actions taken by Tim Donaghy," referee spokesman Lloyd Pierson said in a statement. "This continues to be the Tim that we know. He repeatedly attempts to highlight himself in the media, but the 59 NBA referees will continue to officiate games with the utmost integrity and the focus will remain on the 2009-2010 NBA Season.”

The story isn't over; it never is with Donaghy. No doubt he will find another publisher, or self-publish the book, and the storm will gather again.

I don't know how thoroughly Donaghy's claims were investigated at the time, or whether these new allegations will draw the attention of federal authorities. I don't know whether Donaghy is telling the truth or not. I wasn't there; Donaghy himself wasn't present for some of the improprieties he alleges.

What I do know is that this sad chapter in NBA history will have more postscripts.

Category: NBA
Tags: Tim Donaghy

Since: Aug 4, 2007
Posted on: October 30, 2009 1:50 am

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

Anybody looking at the whole picture can see that the NBA favors a few teams. In no other sport have championships been held by so few.

Even in the no salary cap MLB, there has been teams like the Marlins, Diamondbacks, Rockies and Rays having recent success.

Football and hockey has teams with highs and lows and teams like the Panthers, Cardinals, Lightning and Penguins compete for the prize...

The NBA has been entertainment for years and the fact that half the league has never competed for a championship says it all. How difficult should it be to find 12 guys that are better than the chosen few franchises? Every year?

Since: Nov 23, 2006
Posted on: October 30, 2009 12:16 am

So...they're going to investigate themselves?

Yeah, I'm sure a lot will come of that.

Since: Sep 5, 2009
Posted on: October 30, 2009 12:16 am

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

All you conspiracy theorists are hilarious. Yeah, manipulating games so that the big market teams of Cleveland and San Antonio can win games - that's laughable! And if your claim is true, explain how the Knicks suck and continue to suck, the Nets aren't much better, and Chicago has been good maybe 2 of the last 10 years? If it is true that the refs are crooked I highly doubt that David Stern is behind it all. Might he be covering up a scandal where refs were on the take, maybe... but not the NBA fixing games.

Since: Jul 10, 2008
Posted on: October 29, 2009 11:47 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

Whenever I hear of conspiracy theories, the entire theory has to make sense.   I'm always amazed how people will ignore information that disprove their rational for believing in the conspiracy.  And instead of having answers for holes in their theory, they imply that those who don't believe in the conspiracy have a motive.  Statements like:

You, and all the other Laker fans seem to always bash me and others when this "conspiracy theory" is presented.  Does anyone else find this peculiar.  I see it with other large market team fans but mostly with Laker fans.
Now this statement doesn't prove anything , but it's only made to descredit the messengers, instead of proving them wrong with facts. Asking open ended questions like, "Don't you find it perculiar...?" Isn't proof.  But in the case, you not only try to discred the messager because he's a Lakers fan (becasue you know we can't trust dillusionary Lakers fan), but you use a classic logic fallacy of coming up with an exception to the rule to explain away the hole in your logic.  For example, when a poster points out there is a hole in the conspiracy that claims the conspiracy favors teams in media market by stating that the biggest media market (New York) doesn't seem to get favors, your response is:

It's because they have morons for owners, and an idiot GM who can't assess talent to get an superstars on their team to get the preferential treatment. Well, which one is it that gets you superstars?  David Sterns pulling the strings to bring Gasol to the Lakers or smart GM's who can assess good talent?  Let me see if I have this straight? If the Knicks had better GM's they probably would have a better team?  Not because they have better GM, but because Stern will make sure they get talent because they are not idiots and are in a big market.

Now lets look at this large media markets favored over small market conspiracy and see how all the teams are fairing?

1.  New York - Knicks usually suck, but their GM's are idiots.  Hmm the other team that media market sucks also, the Nets.
2.  Los Angeles - Lakers elite franchise, but the Clippers kind of balance things out.

Wow!  Three of 4 teams in the top two media markets suck.

3.  Chicago - Bulls had one great run with jordan and are a .500 team which is good by Eastern standards.
4.  Philadephia - Just .500, but good by Eastern standards.
5.  Dallas - Ft Worth -  Good team since Mark Cuban.
6.  San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose - Golden State sucks.
7.  Boston - Manchester, NH - Elite, but sucked early in decade and between Bird and KG years.  How did Stern let that happen?
8.  Atlanta- Hawks good by eastern standards, but usually suck.
9.  Washington, DC - Hagerstown, MD - Suck, but Gilbert may get them to .500 and into the play-offs.
10  Houston, -  Will suck, but usually a good franchise with championships.

Now, the top ten media markets seem to cut across the spectrum.  You would think that all of the best teans with the big stars with calls going their way would be in the top media markets to fit into the David Stern conspiracy.  Let's see who is left out:

11. Detroit - Piston have been traditinally a good team in the last decade and 80's
12. Pheonix - Suns have been doing good for a long stretch of time.
13  Seattle-Tacoma - Sonics Suck, but I guess Sterns found out after Payton left that Seattle wasn't big enough to win.
14  Tampa (no team)
15  Minneapolis-St. Paul - Suck.  I guess Stern wised up and put KG in a market that was big enough for him.
16  Denver - Nuggets - How did they get so good to be so small a town?
17  Miami - Heat.  What?  How does a market this small have one of the top 3 players in the game.  Sterns is slacking!
18  Cleveland-Akron - Cavs.  WTF?!!  How did LaBron stay in this crap city that isn't even one of the top ten media markets?!
19. Orlando-Magics.  Now this flies in the face of logic!  Doesn't Stern know how to run a conpiracy?!
20. Sacramento - Kings -  They suck, but their media market is just at large as Orlanod and Cleveland.  Where is their superstar player?
21. St. Louis - Do they have a team?
22. Portland - Nice team at the beginning of decade and now.  Shoot, I don't know how Sterns let you guys get good.
23. Pittsburg - Good thing the Steelers aren't in the NBA where conspiracies take place.
24. Charlette - Bobcats - This proves the conspiracy!
25. Inianapolis - Pacers - Obviously it was Sterns who forced Reggie Miller to retire.

31. Utah - Jazz - Holy crap!  Does Sterns realize hardly anyone lives in this town?
35. Milaukee - Bucks - Explains why Kareem left... Wait, was Sterns the commissioner then?
37. San Antonio - Spurs --OMG!! You would think this would disprove the conspiracy theory....but...

45. Oklahoma City,  I don't even want to mention the name of this team.  Conspiracy theorists rest their case!

50. Memphis - Grizzlies -  Now we understand why Stern got Gasol out of here.  The conspiracy theory is all falling into place!
51. New Orleans - Hornets - Chris Paul, the writing is on the wall, David Stern will not alow you to play in this town and win!

I guess that proves it!  All the best players and team play in the largest media markets... except, when they don't.  And David Stern has orchestated to make sure only the largest media market teams play in the finals, with the exception of the largest media market of them all, New York, because... whatever.   And Stern has made sure that all of the small market teams lack superstars and the ability to win it all... but New Orleans, Utah and San Antonio don't count because that would under the logic of the conspiracy.

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: October 29, 2009 11:18 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

Why is there even a debate about this?  Anybody that doesn't have multiple holes in their head knows for sure that games are fixed in the NBA.. it happens in all sport but in the NBA it happens all the time... it always has and it always will.  How much proof do people need?  A veteran referee gets caught,, not enough proof? Ok then, I've got more for you.  After every fix the guy called another NBA ref after almost every single fix. They supposedly investigated and found no "proof".  What were they looking for, recorded calls? Cell phone companies can't record calls unless they are forced to ahead of time by authorities... and they weren't so they didn't.  But don't tell me it was a coincidence that he called the same NBA ref after almost every fix with the calls being from one cell phone to another.

It was also proven that "low level mafia" was involved. Those are the words from the FBI... not my words.  So once he got involved, he couldn't stop.  I don't know if any of you people have ever personally known any corrupt people, but I have. And I can tell you once you start doing something you're not supposed to be doing, you just can't decide to stop.

Vegas was built by the mafia and the mafia has a huge presence in Vegas today.  It drives me crazy that people don't see this for what it is... it's such a joke.

Anybody know how many times Michael Jordan fouled out in his entire career??  I think he averaged less than once per season

Kobe? one time last year and once the year before.  Lebron? NONE last year and once the year before that.  Weird,, no?

I watched Kobe in last year's playoffs with the ball in his hands, his back to the basket and a defender behind him lunge forward and deck a guy with an elbow to the jaw. He proceed to pass it to Fisher who hit what ended up being a game winning 3 pointer in a big playoff game.  Oh, I almost forgot. I have dvr... I clicked on rewind and froze it...  a ref was about 8 feet away staring at the play with his hands on his knees.. then he put his hands in the air signalling a 3 point shot was made.  How does that happen?

I'll tell you how.  Refs make more money gambling then they do reffing games.... and they always will

p.s I'm buying this book the first day I can....... can't wait to read it.

Since: Mar 13, 2008
Posted on: October 29, 2009 10:50 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

The NBA also said that the only NBA players who ever have abused banned substances were the ones who were already caught.  The problem has been taken care of, and no positive drug test will ever happen again.

Since: Jan 5, 2009
Posted on: October 29, 2009 10:35 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

Love your comment.

This is no news, news.  They will protect their "product", no matter what.  Donaghy tells it like it is, undoubtedly he was nolt alone.  He unveils the culture of refereeing the way it is and is chastised for it.  The NBA has some serious problems, but they prefer to take the elephant in the living room approach.

Since: Jun 25, 2007
Posted on: October 29, 2009 10:24 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

The fowls have finally come home to roost on the NBA.  Back in the 1980's, David Stern made the conscious decision to change how the league was officiated.  This was when the league was just coming out of its coma with the emergence of Larry Bird and Magic Johnson followed closely by the reign of Michael Jordan.

The message was like this "No one comes to an NBA game to the best players sitting on the bench in foul trouble."

Later, this message was reinforced (and I don't know the exact timeline) when Stern hired one of his refereeing toadies, Darrell Garretson, to be the supervisor.  This was the beginning of excising the more colorful referees from the game and turning referees into the zombies that most of them are.  Robots may be better.  This is with the exception of Joey Crawford and maybe one or two others.

David Stern is a tyrant who runs the NBA (and WNBA) with an iron fist.  "But how could someone who looks like a lovable teddy bear be that bad?"  HE IS NOT A LOVABLE TEDDY BEAR.  He is/was an attorney.  He knows the drills.

David Stern needs to go!!!!   ASAP!!!

His buddy Gary "Buttman" Bettman tries to run the NHL in Stern's likeness.  Falls a little short, but that's another soap box.

Since: Apr 9, 2009
Posted on: October 29, 2009 9:17 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

Lol!  Thanks for making my day. 

Since: Sep 22, 2009
Posted on: October 29, 2009 9:00 pm

NBA to investigate Donaghy's latest claims

For every rat you see, there's fifty you don't.  You can bet your ass there are more corrupt officials in the NBA.

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