(I LOVE how Doug Collins completely ignored the fact that Crawford trucked Damon Jones, then called a foul on Billups.)
When I hear the name “Joey Crawford,” I ball my fists, get a menacing look in my eyes and prepare for an onslaught of technical foul whistles.
Oh, a player rolled his eyes? Insta-tech. Waived his arms in disgust! He’s outta here! Laughed within a five-foot radius of Crawford? He’s lucky he didn’t get suspended!
Now, the NBA is trying to uniformly Crawford-ize technical fouls. According to ESPN, the NBA will make changes about how the technical foul will be called.
Referees have been instructed to call a technical for:
• Players making aggressive gestures, such as air punches, anywhere on the court.
• Demonstrative disagreement, such as when a player incredulously raises his hands, or smacks his own arm to demonstrate how he was fouled.
• Running directly at an official to complain about a call.
• Excessive inquiries about a call, even in a civilized tone.
You don’t have to be Albert Einstein to realize that these rules will affect the Celtics drastically. It might even be a good thing that Kendrick Perkins got injured. If he hadn’t, he might have racked up triple-digit technical fouls next year, God knows how many suspensions, and millions of dollars worth of fines. And I’m barely exaggerating.
If referees can whistle players for “demonstrative disagreement,” how many technical fouls will Kevin Garnett compile? He doesn’t disagree any other way but demonstratively.
Look, I’m all for cutting down on excessive complaining. When players complain about call after call after call after call, it irritates me. I’ll admit it. But there’s at least one thing that bothers me more, and that’s when an official pulls a Crawford. In other words, when an official gets trigger-happy tossing around T’s and winds up affecting a game. Find another way to stop players’ complaining, NBA. Fine players, slap them around, whatever. Just don’t throw technical fouls around like they’re in style.
The first time this crusade against complaining loses some team a game it shouldn’t have lost, I hope David Stern blames himself.