Okay, let me preface this post by saying that I think the world of Rajon Rondo. He’s the epitome of a floor general, one of the best point guards in the NBA, and most importantly, a former Cat, which usually makes me look the other way on situations involving them. Not this one. Rondo deserved to be suspended one game for what happened Sunday night in Atlanta, and I wouldn’t have been shocked at two. My main man, Corey Nichols, expressed his displeasure with NBA refs this morning, and even provided an example of the craziness that sometimes is NBA officiating. He’s a great writer and presented some valid points, but I only somewhat agree with his argument. Yes, NBA officials do abuse their power every once in a while. In fact, referees like Tim Donaghy makes me think that they have way too much control on the outcome of the game. But this time, this situation, Rondo was entirely at fault.
Let’s look the at the play again:
As a former ref (one year in UK intramurals, and I treated every game like I was reffing game 7 of the NBA finals), I like to think I know a little somethin’-somethin’ about it. First thing they tell you in referee training is that “you have to have control of the game.” Rondo, first overreacted to the call, and then committed a cardinal sin by bumping the referee. He had to be thrown out, and for NBA referee’s sake, suspended a game. If you don’t suspended him you send the message it’s okay to push referees around, not only to the rest of the league, but to little kids and fans worldwide. It’s tough because Rondo is clearly the best player on the Celtics, and I’m sure David Stern doesn’t want to lose anymore stars after the Derrick Rose injury, but Rondo sort of forced his hand. Aside from all of that, Rondo’s recent history of blatant disrespect of referees probably made the decision a little easier for Stern. Remember this from a couple of months ago?
Come to think of it, with his history, I’m completely shocked it wasn’t two games or more. I believe if this wasn’t the playoffs he would’ve been sitting more than one game, but suspending him two games all but ends Boston’s season. The NBA can’t allow one its premier franchises to lose on a suspension. Rondo seems like the coolest kid ever off the court, but has a problem keeping his cool when he’s between the lines. Hopefully the Celtics aren’t too deep in a hole upon his return and they can make this a competitive series. What say you? Are you for or or against the suspension?