Tuesday, July 15, 2008

the plot thickens

this blog has been quiet for a bit, not much new to report, and I didn't quite know how to react to Stern's new appointee to oversee the refs. it seems on the surface to be a step in the right direction, but that doesn't mean that Stern's tampering with the last decade of NBA results should just be water under the bridge.

anyway, some more damning news broke today:

"Tim Donaghy placed 134 calls to referee Scott Foster — more than the 126 calls Donaghy made to his bookie — between October 2006 and April 2007, the period during which he has confessed to either betting on games or passing on game information to gamblers. The majority of the phone calls lasted no more than two minutes and occurred prior to and after games Donaghy officiated and on which he admits wagering."


the specifics at that link are pretty incredible, that piece is essential reading. these calls were all made on his cell phone that was dedicated to gambling, and most within minutes of talking to his bookie.

oh, by the way, Stern chose to ignore all of this (or use it to his advantage) and let Foster ref games 1 and 5 of the Finals (along with Dick Bavetta). his arrogance, knowing that these facts would come out and simply not caring, continues to be just remarkable. WHERE ARE THE OWNERS?


Norm said...

Although not really germane to the above post, it is nonetheless deserving of note on a blog dedicated to the ouster of Stern.

A blip in today's Portland Tribune basically says that Stern intends to punish the city of Seattle for not rolling over and letting his buddy Bennett walk away with the Sonics unimpeded. According to the item in the Trib:

"The story making the rounds in King County is that Stern called a city official a while back and said something along the lines of, 'If you don’t let the Sonics go, you’re never going to get a team.'"

So it looks like Seattle - whose fans have enthusiastically supported NBA basketball for 41 years - won't even have a chance of sniffing another franchise until Stern leaves office.

So in addition to nurturing a culture of corruption amongst his league's officials, the Commish is reportedly a vindictive little prick as well.

Jon said...

nice, thanks for that. it seems like more evidence that Stern answers to no one, certainly not the owners, and the media seems to mostly be intimidated (I'm actually impressed with ESPN focusing on the Donaghy stuff as much as they have since they own the NBA rights).

Norm said...

Thanks, Jon. Anything to help further the cause.

For me, the whole Sonic situation was far more rigged than any game refereed by Donaghy or Salvatore.

It was bad enough that Bennett purchased the team with every intention of taking them away from a community that had supported it since 1967. Not only did Stern do nothing to prevent this blatant theft, rumors were that his longstanding friendship with Bennett made him a more than willing accomplice. Today's report that he warned Seattle officials against fighting to retain the team suggests that those rumors are accurate.

Unfortunately, the owners won't lift a finger to do a thing about this as they all want to reserve the right to move their own teams should their present communities balk at any future demands for a new, taxpayer funded arena.

Jon said...

Norm, I don't know too much about the specifics of the whole Sonics situation, but if you'd like to contribute an overview piece as it relates to Stern, just e-mail me and I'll add you to the author list here.