NBA Referees Highly Criticized for Poor Officiating in Game 1
A much-anticipated Game 1 between the Warriors and Rockets ended in a nail-biting narrow Warriors victory, but unfortunately the match was overshadowed by the officiating.
Players arguing with officials is nothing new, but this game in particular, was filled with controversial calls. Specifically, the main issue in question is the close out call, referring to how much space defenders have to give jump-shooters when they land. The rule dates back to the 2017 playoffs when Zaza Pachulia aggressively closed out on Kawhi Leonard, causing him to land on his foot, twist his ankle and suffer a serious injury.
James Harden and Chris Paul were obviously furious in the post-match interview with Harden saying that all he wants is for rules to be enforced and to be given a ‘fair chance’. In Draymond Green’s interview, he responded to Harden arguing the opposite; that Harden is actually the one committing fouls by kicking his feet out and creating contact.
Regardless, there is clearly an issue with consistency and enforcement and something needs to be done about it to avoid high-profile, exciting games being overshadowed by the officials.
Numerous NBA players and executives including Jared Dudley, Rudy Gobert and Mark Cuban took to social media to voice their opinions and question the officiating.
I don’t like the flop but that’s a foul.. look where Livingston jump from and land, then look at his hand that contested the shot.. The other camera view shows it all https://t.co/EvI3LQTpvO
— Jared Dudley (@JaredDudley619) April 28, 2019
My guys were not allowed to contest shots like that last week…or maybe i’m crazy and it’s just camera angles 🤔 https://t.co/RvqYdCWzuC
— Rudy Gobert (@rudygobert27) April 28, 2019
It’s on the @nba competition committee to get rid of the side to side foul. The defender has every right to the space. Offensive players are smart enough to take advantage of this. It’s not on the refs. It’s league stupidity
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) April 28, 2019
The referee report that comes out tomorrow, summarizing the calls and admitting any mistakes will be incredibly interesting to read tomorrow. Moreover, this is only game 1. How will the officials react for the rest of the series?