Let me just start by saying this. If anyone reading this has any sort of blueprints or inside knowledge of Tim Donaghy’s house, let me know. If anyone reading this knows how to contact some of the more ‘persuasive’ members of the Gambino family; let me know. I am not saying I want to see the man dead, just that I might like to see these two groups of people get together and have a little talk.
Can anyone honestly believe that the words ‘witness-protection program’ even came up in the same article that opens the world’s eyes to what a scumbag this guy is? He has refereed over 200 games in the past few years (not to mention being plastered all over the television and internet right now) and there are a lot of people out there ready to toss some blame his way of lost dreams of glory and high gambling stakes (he can relate) whether he was even responsible that night or not.
Speaking of those people, and a game where he most certainly was responsible for the outcome, was Game 3 of the 2007 Suns-Spurs play-off series. Try the link, someone has put together a real nice video compilation together. For a Suns fan who watched that game in utter horror, despite having witnessed similar officiating debacles against this very Spurs team several times before, that these calls were being made… and the national broadcast crew was finally calling the refs out on it live… the revelation of Donaghy’s crimes comes with a certain feeling of redemption.
Everyone saw it and even Bill Simmons and ESPN were crying foul when it came to the excessive and seemingly one-sided foul calls. I do not believe that Coach Popovich is blameless in the under-handed play in that series either. In retrospect, the shoulder check that Robert Horry dealt to Steve Nash was almost certainly a Pop call to accomplish exactly what was accomplished. Hit the Suns MVP team-leader into the boards with a shot from a much bigger guy and clear the Suns bench (particularly their big-men) onto the floor where they can be repremanded by the refs and the league. None of Pop’s minions left their bench that time (although they sure did earlier in the game) because they all knew what was going to happen– they all knew the plan.
I am not saying Coach Popovich had inside knowledge into how the calls were going to go or how the league would rule that scenario because of Donaghy or anyone else. I’m not saying that he didn’t either. Regardless, Pop is a dirty coach with a team of floppers and dirty players. I am just waiting for that book that is going to come out somewhere eight to ten years down the line from someone in the Spurs organization (player or otherwise) detailing the brainwashing or whatever it is that Pop must put these guys through to get them play that way. Maybe not… maybe he just hand-picked a team of dirty players.