Kings Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Sacramento Kings and the NBA.

June 15, 2008
Oh, now I get it ....

LOS ANGELES - Mystery solved. Immediately after the Lakers' unimpressive Game 5 victory over the Boston Celtics, I happened upon David Stern while he was waiting for his wife, Diane, outside the women's restroom in the back of Staples Center. As I was about to blurt out the obvious question - whether the Commissioner had any concerns about assigning Dick Bavetta because of the stress he must be experiencing from Tim Donaghy's unfounded allegations - one of my colleagues beat me to it.
Stern explained that Bavetta was "next up on the wheel," referring to the playoff rotation for the referees. He then added that he never considered replacing the longtime ref - who was one of the officials who worked the controversial Kings-Lakers Game 6 - because of Donaghy's claims that two of the refs that night (Bavetta, Bob Delaney, Ted Bernhardt) "conspired" to influence the outcome and extend the series per the league's desires.
I have to agree with Stern on this. Bavetta's a big boy. He has to deal with this sooner or later. It would have been terribly unfair to remove him from the rotation because of a convicted felon's claims or reports that the FBI inquired about him last summer.

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