NBA Conspiracy Theory – Part 2

 

I knew it!! Granted the source is a little suspect but Tim Donaghy, the ref convicted of betting on NBA games filed papers on Tuesday accusing the NBA of having games manipulated by its referees in order to boost ticket sales and TV ratings. I know that some of you are wondering how a referee could “fix” a game; quite simple really. The one thing that a ref has control of is his whistle. He can determine how many times a player or even a team goes to the free throw line. He can also control who gets technical fouls and who gets ejected from a game. He can control how many times a player or a team gets called for traveling (which in the NBA a ref could make that call on every posession). All of these things ultimately affect the outcome of a game. Donaghy specifically stated that the 2002 Playoffs were fixed; especially the western conference finals. That would mean that the Lakers last championship was “tainted”? Hmmm…sounds believable, but then again this is Donaghy we’re talking about. Consider this…the 2002 NBA Finals was between the Los Angeles Lakers and the New Jersey Nets. The Lakers played the Sacramento Kings in the western conference finals (Donaghy specifically pointed to LA’s comeback from a 3-2 series deficit and the 27 FT’s they shot in the 4th quarter of Game 6 to force a 7th game) and the Nets played the Boston Celtics in the eastern conference finals. So the NBA could’ve conceivably had a Lakers/Celtics final 6 years ago right? But then again Rod Thorn is the President and GM of the Nets and he was also NBA’s Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations for 14 years and he is the guy that calls the names of players selected in the second round of the NBA Draft. Sounds like there could be some collusion there. Besides, would anybody have tuned in to watch the Kings play the Nets or the Celtics for the ‘ship? Probably nobody outside of Sacramento, New England or the Tri-State area. I barely watched the Lakers/Nets series!

There are a lot of ways that you could look at this. Some people who think conspiracy theorists like myself are crazy could always counter-argue what seems like obvious improprieties, but I’m of the belief that where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Can any of this ever be proven with any hard “physical” evidence? I doubt it. But it does add fuel to the fire of people like myself who have long thought that the outcomes of games were already pre-determined before the jump ball. I’ll be the crazy one though…me and Rasheed Wallace.

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