Blog Entry

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

Posted on: March 15, 2011 10:12 am
Edited on: March 15, 2011 11:45 am
 
Posted by Royce Young

NBA officials are used to hearing insults and "critiques" of their work. It's part of the job. But don't tweet it, especially if it's about Bill Spooner.

Spooner and the NBA have filed for damages in excess of $75,000 against AP reporter Jon Krawczynski of Minnesota for a tweet he posted during the Timberwolves Jan. 24 game against the Rockets.

Krawczynski tweeted,
"Ref Bill Spooner told Rambis he'd 'get it back' after a bad call. Then he made an even worse call on Rockets. That's NBA officiating folks."

What really happened, according to Spooner, is that after a questionable call early in the second quarter, Kurt Rambis gave Spooner an earful about the call. Spooner promised Rambis he'd take a look at the play in question and review it at the half. Rambis snidely asked how he'd get the points back though. Spooner says he didn't respond to that.

Spooner called the tweet defamatory, but the AP and the reporter have refused to remove or retract it. Spooner has been an NBA official for 22 years.

Obviously the NBA is sensitive about these sort of accusations because of the Tim Donaghy situation, so you can't blame Spooner. A tweet claiming he would get Minnesota their points back basically says he shouldn't be officiating NBA games. If he's not going to call it fair, he should be removed. That's why he took so much offense to it. It's a hearty accusation to make. It's one thing to think it, but to publish it is another.

Now of course, the reporter in question is standing behind what he heard so it's obviously possible that's exactly what happened. But still, that's not something you flippantly throw out there. The NBA investigated Spooner following the tweet and didn't find anything against him. But as an official that's never really had an incident, I'm sure Spooner didn't like it. Hench the suing.
Comments

Since: Mar 18, 2011
Posted on: March 18, 2011 5:34 am
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

  When I was at the Clippers/Bucks game at the end of January Kevin Cutler (very good referee) made a pretty bad non call that was right in front of him where Blake Griffin got hacked. I yelled "come on Donaghy" at the top of my lungs and I was in 2nd row on the court and he snapped his head around and gave me a smirk.   Anyone who thinks that Donaghy's exerpts about refs showing preferential treatment and hating players is off needs a thorough head examination. It is human nature for to hate some of these  multi million dollar babies and bad calls are inevitable. The NBA and David Stern in particular are trying to wash everything under the rug by issuing zero-tolerance on players and the whole thing is a joke. I am sure the league is behind Spooner suing to save face and it's kinda funny. 



Since: Mar 30, 2007
Posted on: March 18, 2011 1:42 am
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

Right a honest NBA ref is like saying a honest politician or honrable Lawyer.



Since: Nov 10, 2006
Posted on: March 17, 2011 9:08 pm
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

No doubt refs have a tough job.  They're going to miss calls, but they shouldn't ever purposefully make a bad call to make up for another.  Either bring in instant replay, which I don't want, or stand by your call.  Look at the replay after the game to try and improve. 
PS Crawford is, as Chuck would say, TURRABULL!!



Since: Nov 14, 2009
Posted on: March 16, 2011 3:04 pm
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

I'm just throwing this out there... one of the most respected NBA referees, Joe Crawford, received a lifetime suspension for a federal indictment in the 90s (income tax evasion) for which he was found guilty of, and Stern lifted it a year later.  He obviously has some trust issues, but he's one of the best in the game, according to the players and coaches.  There's no doubt in my mind he said those exact words to Kurt Rambis, but I think he should have.  Blown calls and makeup calls have always been a part of the game, and there's a reason for it.  People make mistakes, and everybody in working class and corporate America do some sort of compensatory work when they screw up on the job, so NBA officials need the pass once in a while as well.  Usually, the makeup call is given as a violation, and if it is a PF, it's given as an illegal screen to the guy with hardly any fouls.



Since: Jul 22, 2007
Posted on: March 16, 2011 2:18 pm
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

If you think because the NBA hired an army general to oversee the oficials that is the reason that officiating has improved than you are sadly mistaken.
The reason why it's improved is exactly BECAUSE of Donaghy, the refs know that night in and night out EVERY call they make, EVERY move they make is watched and scrutinized not just by the league or head of officiating but rather by the press, coaches & fans.
They don't want to lose their job especially over the smallest of infraction so they are toeing the line and I don't care if it's Colin Powell or General Schwarzkopf overseeing the refs they are NOT the reason for ANY perceived improvement in the quality of officiating.



Since: Aug 18, 2006
Posted on: March 16, 2011 1:27 pm
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

If the referee said it then he has to go. The NBA has taken a huge hit by the number of bad calls over the years and the whole Donaghy allegations which most perceive as true. There should be no tolerance of corrupt referees period. Mistakes happen, but to come out and say such a thing like what was said, that is bad, REAL BAD. If he is innocent, then fine, commence with the lawsuit, complaint, etcetera.



Since: Apr 28, 2007
Posted on: March 16, 2011 10:50 am
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

Of course he said it. Baseball is just as bad. While instant reply is used sparingly to correct points or home runs, it will always be impossible to call games 100% correct. If you stand were the coach is and look at were the referees are they are always getting different looks at plays. What you can see from the stands isn't what the ref see on the court. So therefore we can complain and act stupid because of it. One last note complaining and acting stupid generally only plays out when your tema gets jobbed, when it happens to the other team too bad quit your crying!!!!!!Cool 



Since: Jun 22, 2008
Posted on: March 16, 2011 10:31 am
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

From the article: Hench the suing.

WTF does that mean???
Pretty sure it's a typo and he meant to write "Hence the suing."



Since: Oct 22, 2007
Posted on: March 16, 2011 8:41 am
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

Imagine if this went to court and videos of past NBA games were submitted as evidence and David Stern had to sit there and explain all the horrible calls going consistently against certain teams and for other teams and rationalize for the court why no action is ever taken by the NBA against refs who influence the outcome of not just individual games, but even championships, with their poor on-the-job performance. That would be more entertaining than an actual game!



Since: Oct 22, 2007
Posted on: March 16, 2011 8:32 am
 

NBA official sues reporter over tweet

From the article: Hench the suing.

WTF does that mean???


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