Tommy Heinsohn not a fan of the “stupid” new NBA technical rules

3 Comments

Kevin Garnett got tossed last night for something said in a conversation with the referee during a technical foul shot. Well away from the play. Two techs right on top of one another.

As you might imagine, old-school Celtics broadcaster Tommy Heinsohn was not a fan (thanks to Mike Prada of SBN for finding the video).

“This is stupid! Believe me this is going to happen during the regular season and, this is absolutely, NBA it’s stupid.

Don’t quote me on that.”

Some of the complaining about calls in NBA games certainly had been excessive, but the motives for the change on the league’s side show why the swing has been so extreme.

You know where this is coming from with the league, right? The same mindset that came up with the dress code — to be able to sell the game better to the rich, mostly corporate people that purchase the luxury boxes and expensive seats that drive the league’s economics now. People that don’t take that kind of complaining from their employees (who just do it behind their backs) and don’t think it belongs on the court. (Those people are mostly white, you can inject some race discussion into this, but I’m not qualified or able to do so well enough to walk that line. You’re on your own there.)

The NBA wants to be able to sell the game better to the less urban. The red states. Focus groups told the league there was too much complaining by players, so here you go. Technicals for everyone.

The good news is that by Christmas the pendulum will have swung back to a more sane middle ground. Where a player who throws his arms up in the air and runs toward the referee to complain gets the technical, but the guy standing at halfcourt having a conversation does not. (Note, we don’t know what Garnett said, he may have used magical language that earned this, but it still seems over the top.)

But right now, it does look stupid. And with all there is to talk about in this sport, we are talking about the referees. Again.

Charles Barkley on new schedule: “These poor babies can’t play back-to-back games”

Getty Images
2 Comments

Training camp hasn’t even opened yet, but Charles Barkley is already in midseason “get off my lawn” form.

Barkley — the man who can’t stand jump shooting teams, or analytics, or LeBron James asking for better players, or your newfangled technology — went off on another tedious rant at an SMU event Wednesday, this time about the NBA’s decision to start the season a little earlier and have fewer back-to-backs and eliminate four-games-in-five-nights.

Ugh. Like a lot of former players — and a lot of non-athletes, for that matter — Barkley is convinced his peak as a player coincided with the greatest era of basketball ever. Things were never better than the way they did it in his day.

Which means facts — like pointing to the studies that show players both are less likely to be injured and play better and more efficiently when rested — don’t matter. Barkley did it, so players now should have to do it. Who cares if all these packed in games can shorten their careers?

Then again, maybe a few days off would have helped Barkley in the second half of his career.

B.J. Armstrong, former Jordan-era Bull turned agent, told me last year that if teams and players knew in his day what they know now about rest and injury, you would have seen stars like MJ rest. Over time we learn more information, and the smart people and organizations adjust.

Barkley will make far more headlines over the course of the season, he gets paid to be brash, say whatever pops into head, and be generally draw attention to himself. It makes him entertaining, and that’s what Inside the NBA is about. But I will defer to Steve Kerr’s comments from last playoffs on all these old “get off my lawn” players.

“The game gets worse as time goes on. Players are less talented than they used to be. The guys in the 50s would’ve destroyed everybody. It’s weird how human evolution goes in reverse in sports. Players get weaker, smaller, less skilled. I don’t know. I can’t explain it.”

For a couple grand, Warriors fans can have Larry O’Brien Trophy visit their suite

Getty Images
5 Comments

There’s so much money floating around the Bay Area right now thanks to another tech boom, this price almost seems low.

If you have a suite for the Golden State Warriors home games this season — and those are pretty much sold out, the Warriors draw big from the Silicon Valley crowd — you can have the NBA championship Larry O’Brien Trophy visit your suite. All for just a couple grand. From Gilbert Lee, via ESPN’s Darren Rovell.

The best part is it includes champagne… do you get to spray each other with it as you hold up the trophy? Now that would be perfect (goggles included, of course).

Have an issue with this? Why? To the victor goes the spoils. The Warriors may be able to sell this package for years.

Sixers new “Spirit of 76” court is fire

Via Twitter
6 Comments

First, the Sixers nailed the Nike “statement” jersey.

Now, they have announced a new “Spirit of 76” promotion, with seven tribute nights this season honoring the history of the franchise and of the Philadelphia area (and there is plenty of history to honor).

The best part — the “Spirit of 76” court with the bell logo.

Here is the promo vid

I just hope the Sixers team can live up to all the hype.

Wizards’ Markieff Morris to have sports hernia surgery, miss start of camp

Associated Press
Leave a comment

When the Washington Wizards open training camp next Tuesday, starting forward Markieff Morris will not be on the court.

That’s because he will have surgery to repair a sports hernia, a story broken by Candice Buckner of the Washington Post and since confirmed by Chase Hughes at CSNMidAtlantic.com.

While we don’t have details on the surgery, often recovery time for this is just a few weeks, and Morris could well be ready for the start of the season.

Morris averaged 14 points and 6.5 rebounds a game last season, and the Wizards offense was 5.7 points per 100 possessions better when he was on the court last season. With him out, coach Scott Brooks can lean on Jason Smith or Mike Scott for traditional lineups, but don’t be shocked if he tries a little small ball with Otto Porter and/or Kelly Oubre at the three or four.

Morris also is in the midst of a felony assault trial in Arizona (one where he does not need to attend).