The NBA referees have won their short battle against the coaches with Jason Kidd latest suspension following his ejection against the Kings. The Bucks’ coach will serve one game suspension without pay tonight against the Magic for slapping the ball out of the referee hands.
This come couple days after Hawks’ coach Mike Budenholzer was ejected and fined 25K for bumping the ref on the court against the Cavs. The non suspension of Budenholzer drew a statement from the National Basketball Referees Association through Twitter saying he should have been suspended because the fine was not a strong message for the gravity of the incident.
The coaches were not going to stand down following that strong statement and Rick Carlisle, who is the president of the coaches association, blasted the referees for trying to gain twitter attention.
“The NBA Coaches Association greatly values our working relationship with the league office and our officials,” NBA Coaches Association president Rick Carlisle, coach of the Dallas Mavericks, said in a statement. “For the record, our association would NEVER lobby for the suspension of an official for a situation like this one that has been thoroughly reviewed by the NBA and clearly determined to be incidental in nature. We view the unwarranted and reckless verbal attacks by Referee Union general counsel as grandstanding in nature, and beneath the dignity of the highly regarded group whose interests he claims to represent. The best interests of our great league lie far above what appears to be an obvious cheap and misguided attempt for a blast of short-term Twitter fame.”
Spurs coach, Gregg Popovich seemed to agree with Carlisle by relaying the same message.
“I think it’s just a case of an anonymous suit trying to gain 15 minutes of stardom more than anything. It’s comical…A lot of people trying to get famous on Twitter. And I guess this particular suit is one of them.”
When Kidd was ejected Wednesday, it was interesting to see how the league was going to react after this battle through the media and it seems with Kidd’s suspension the league took the referees’ side. This is certainly not a trend the NBA wants to see and by handing out a suspension, they send a message to all the coaches to respect the referees.
It was uncalled for the referees association to ask for a suspension, they could have handled it better and hopefully it won’t build more animosity towards both parties but for now the referees took the win in this very short lived beef.