Adam Silver’s march toward a more transparent NBA is not taking a step back — it’s going full steam ahead.
After the Christmas Day games, when the NBA admitted that Richard Jefferson fouled Kevin Durant on the final play of regulation and KD should have gone to the line with a chance to win the game, there has been a backlash against the NBA’s Two-Minute Reports, which break down the officiating in close games and explain each call. Durant said it was unfair to officials. Dwyane Wade flat-out hates the reports. Stan Van Gundy, Gregg Popovich, and Steve Kerr have all questioned them at times. The list of coaches/players/GMs who despises those reports is too long to list here, and they all need to get in line behind the referees union.
The NBA’s response? Probably going to start releasing full game reports someday. That’s what Kiki Vandeweghe, the NBA’s executive vice president of basketball operations, told Zach Lowe at ESPN.
(As an aside, Vandeweghe confirmed the controversial last-two-minute reports aren’t going anywhere. In fact, he said the NBA would “probably” start releasing full game reports at some point.)
I’m one of the few supporters of the Two-Minute Reports — I would rather have a league that owns up to its mistakes in critical moments rather than taking some dictatorial, monolithic stance that everything is right. Transparency is a good thing.
But there can be too much of it. I don’t like the idea of a 48-minute report. Do we really need to go back and hash out a first-quarter block/charge call and how that may have impacted the game? Do we need to expose the NBA officials — who make hundreds of decisions a game and get almost all of them right — to more criticism?
I hate to sound like a stodgy old baseball fan, but the game is refereed by humans, and on some level we have to accept and live with the mistakes officials make. They are not robots, and if Westworld has taught us anything it’s that we may not want to put too much faith in androids anyway.
But it sounds like the 48-minute report is on the way, want it or not.