Thank you, Tim Donaghy. Thank you.
For two years - perhaps more - you've been betting on games. You've lost money, and gotten yourself into trouble with your bookie and the mob. You've bet on games you officiated. And you've altered the outcomes of said games.**Since an indictment has not yet been made, I will ask readers to insert the word "allegedly" in every assertion made above.
For quite some time, we at Basketbawful have bemoaned the inconsistent - and sometimes absurd - officiating of NBA games. It has actually made it more difficult, over time, to watch this sport we love so dearly. We've joked, we've needled, we've made assertions that somebody is "on the take." And yet despite our most acrimonious accusations, in the back of our minds we always thought these officiating mishaps were honest, albeit incompetant, mistakes. There was that notion - naive perhaps - that the league, while grossly imperfect, was clean.
And now here comes Tim Donaghy, galloping in on a white horse to justify all of those assertions we made.
Thank you, Tim Donaghy.
Thank you for making us seem so smart.The Repercussions
I do not feel, like the rest of the world, that this will destroy the league for years to come. In fact, I don't even think it will alter the perception of the league for very long at all. If anything, the black eye Donaghy has created will - let's hope - cause the league be more diligent in its oversight of officials, now that there is tangible proof that such crookedness can, and does, exist. It will be more difficult for other refs do something like Donaghy has done, now that a spotlight has been put on it.
People have short memories, NBA fans will love the sport regardless of this development, and they are too savvy to attach the behavior of one man to an entire group of unmotivated, middle aged, legally blind men. Donaghy is now a punch line of jokes and a tag line for NBA haters, but his behavior won't make one iota's worth of difference whether Joe Paycheck or John Rockerfeller are going to buy season tickets for their favorite team. If attendance is down next year, it will not be because Tim Donaghy is an idiot - but to attract eyeballs and fill newspaper columns, analysts will undoubtedly argue this notion.
That said, let's give some highly sarcastic props to a league where a dirty official, betting on his own games and altering their outcomes, WASN'T CAUGHT FOR YEARS
. What does this say about the officiating in this league? It says that a man actually attempting
to fix games fit right in with a league full of bumbling zebras who mess up althletic contests regularly without one bit of involvement by bookies or the Mob.
If that doesn't scream for the league to reevaluate the competance and methods of its officials, I don't know what does.
Labels: Tim Donaghy