View Full Version : NBA to move ahead with replacement refs

09-19-2009, 12:40 AM
By BRIAN MAHONEY, AP Basketball Writer 41 minutes ago


NEW YORK (AP)—The NBA will hold training camp next week with replacement officials, saying the referees union has rejected its final contract offer.

The National Basketball Referees Association has been bracing for a lockout since talks first broke down last week, and lead negotiator Lamell McMorris called it “imminent and unavoidable” after no deal was reached Thursday.

A statement from the NBA on Friday made it clear the lockout was under way.

“It is extremely disappointing that the NBRA has ignored the economic realities, rejected our offer, and left us with no choice but to begin using replacement referees,” executive vice president and general counsel Rick Buchanan said.

McMorris said the referees didn’t view Thursday’s negotiations as a final offer, yet wasn’t surprised by the NBA’s decision.

“I predicted that a lockout was forthcoming and yet it does not mean that both sides cannot continue to talk and work through some of these issues,” McMorris said.

Training camp was scheduled to begin Sunday, but will now be pushed back into sometime next week to give the NBA time to line up the replacements and get them to New Jersey. The league did not say how many referees would be at camp. There are 57 active NBA officials.

The league began contacting replacements last Wednesday, the day after the last face-to-face meeting between the sides in New York, which commissioner David Stern abruptly ended because he said the officials reneged on a previously agreed to proposal.

McMorris said he “absolutely disputes” that, insisting replacement officials—including some who had been fired by the league—were contacted well before the last session.

The contract between the NBA and its officials expired Sept. 1, and the sides had been trying to reach a new two-year deal. They largely agreed on salaries, which would have held steady this year and given the refs a slight increase in the second year, but the union balked at the league’s attempt to change retirement benefits.

The league also sought to lower costs through reductions in areas such as the travel budget and per diems, and the union also fought a league plan to develop younger officials. But the biggest difference was in the referees’ pension and severance plans.

The NBA’s statement said the previous deal gave the referees retirement bonuses of up to $575,000, on top of pension benefits that could exceed $2 million. It said that came on top of compensation totaling nearly $150,000 per year for entry level referees and more than $550,000 annually for the most senior referees.

McMorris was upset the NBA included salary information in its release, calling it a “distortion of the referees current compensation”, since he contends the NBA gave raises and bonuses to the three men in the league office who oversee the referee operations department.

“I just thought that was an unfortunate low blow that they’re attempting to do in order to create media spin and I guess to try to get fans to not sympathize with our plight,” McMorris said.

Stern has said the league is trying to bring the referees’ budget in line with other departments.

“The proposals we have made to the NBRA are extraordinarily fair and reasonable, given the current economic circumstances,” Buchanan said. “Since late 2008, the league and our teams have made far deeper cuts in non-referee headcount and expenses than we are asking for here.”

The first preseason game is scheduled for Oct. 1 at Utah. The NBA hasn’t used replacement referees since early in the 1995-96 season.

“We’re the ones who have given back money, put money back on the table,” McMorris said. “I just don’t know what else we can do.”

Comments, people.

09-19-2009, 05:39 PM
no comments?

09-19-2009, 05:41 PM
they're gonna be real strict
we're gonna hate them

09-19-2009, 05:44 PM
any referees will be an upgrade over what we have now. some proud, egotistical old geezers like joey crawford. i actually like dick bavetta, but he's really really old. steve jabby, we all know his rep. and finally, I hate referee dan crawford.

Hopefully, we can see some fair officiating with these replacement refs

09-19-2009, 05:49 PM
they're gonna be real strict
we're gonna hate them

as long as they don't call ticky tack fouls and allow physical play, im all for it. we gotta get out of this sissy mode version of the nba

10-06-2009, 12:17 PM
The replacement refs are coming mostly from the D-League and WNBA with a smattering of college guys. So far, there does not seem to be many complaints about the job they are doing. This list of replacement refs (http://phillyref.com/basketball/nbarefs/nbapreseason.html) is updated daily and includes photos and game assignments.

Steve Anderson
Riel Banaria
Brett Barnaky
Scott Bolnick
Michael Borgelt
Lorenzo Bronson
Nick Buchert
Deldre Carr
Jose Carrion
Marcus Clayton
Sir Allen Connor
Andre Crawford
Kane Fitzgerald
Edward Gaines
Carlos Gonzalez
Micheal Henderson
Don Hudson
Byron Jarrett
Keith Kimble
Marat Kogut
Karl Lane
Jamie Luckie
Tre Maddox
Glenn Mayberry
George McDaniels
William Mensah
Matthew Myers
Brett Nansel
JT Orr
Mike Price
Robbie Robinson
Kevin Scott
Garrick Shannon
Brian Shelley
Lamont Simpson
Jeff Smith
Kevin Sparrock
Clarke Stevens
Ben Taylor
Josh Tiven
Tony Turner
Scott Twardoski
Kurt Walker
CJ Washington
Ken Washington
James Williams
Jeff Wooten

10-06-2009, 12:21 PM
Couldn't be any worse than what they normally put out there.

fresh prince
10-06-2009, 01:06 PM
Yea seriously. .When you suck at your job.. I really wouldnt hold out for more dough..

All of these dudes are replaceable..Scary situation for them..

I would hope the replacement refs let the guys play more..The ticky tack fouls at times make basketball un - watchable

10-06-2009, 01:34 PM
the replacement refs ive seen have been alot better than the old refs.

although will bynum last night took 2 free throws for maceo baston and the refs didnt realize til after bynum made both free throws. they took away the 2 points and made baston re shoot.

10-06-2009, 03:40 PM
I want to be a ref.

10-06-2009, 05:44 PM
I want to be a ref.

Just curious, did you ever make it to LA!