Tim Donaghy

 

Tim Donaghy alleges NBA Rigged playoff games

Did Kobe have Donaghy in his back pocket ?

Ex-referee Tim Donaghy alleged  Tuesday in a filing made by his attorney in U.S. District Court in New York, saying the highly controversial Game 6 of the Lakers- Kings playoff series in 2002 was impacted by the actions of two of the three referees who worked the game.

Donaghy saves Kobe from getting his ass Kicked

In the letter submitted by Donaghy's attorney, the following "manipulation" is alleged:

"Referees A, F and G were officiating a playoff series between Teams 5 and 6 in May of 2002. It was the sixth game of a seven-game series, and a Team 5 victory that night would have ended the series. However, Tim learned from Referee A that Referees A and F wanted to extend the series to seven games. Tim knew referees A and F to be "company men," always acting in the interest of the NBA, and that night, it was in the NBA's interest to add another game to the series. Referees A and F heavily favored Team 6. Personal fouls [resulting in obviously injured players] were ignored even when they occurred in full view of the referees. Conversely, the referees called made-up fouls on Team 5 in order to give additional free throw opportunities for Team 6. Their foul-calling also led to the ejection of two Team 5 players. The referees' favoring of Team 6 led to that team's victory that night, and Team 6 came back from behind to win that series."

Although no teams are specifically named, it is not hard to deduce the game in question. The Lakers-Kings series was the only one that postseason that went seven games, and the officiating in Game 6 was so questionable that consumer advocate and former presidential candidate Ralph Nader called for a formal investigation.

The Lakers attempted 40 free throws to the Kings' 25 in that game, and Los Angeles made 21-of-27 from the line while Sacramento converted 7-of-9 in the fourth quarter alone.

In addition, a foul was called against Mike Bibby of the Kings after he was shoved and elbowed by Kobe Bryant of the Lakers denying the Kings an opportunity to try for a tying basket. Also in that game, Kings centers Vlade Divac and Scot Pollard fouled out, and Kings coach Rick Adelman was highly critical of the officiating afterward.

"My first thought [upon hearing Donaghy's allegation] was: I knew it," Pollard said Tuesday night. "I'm not going to say there was a conspiracy. I just think something wasn't right. It was unfair. We didn't have a chance to win that game."

The Lakers went on to win the 2002 NBA championship

The document referenced other alleged improprieties that Donaghy disclosed to federal law enforcement officials. Among them:

 "Tim gave information on how top executives of the NBA sought to manipulate games using referees to boost ticket sales and television ratings," the letter reads. "He also described how nepotism played a far greater role than qualifications in a number of referee hirings."

 "Tim explained the league officials would tell referees that they should withhold calling technical fouls on certain star players because doing so would hurt ticket sales and television ratings," the letter adds. "As an example, Tim explained how there were times when a referee supervisor would tell referees that NBA Executive X did not want them to call technical fouls on star players or remove them from the game. In January 2000, Referee D went against these instructions and elected a star player in the first quarter of the game. Referee D later was privately reprimanded by the league for that ejection."

Donaghy alleges Stern was involved

 In addition to game-altering allegations, Donaghy's letter claims that many officials carry on "relationships" with team executives, coaches and players that violate their NBA contracts. For example, it said, referees broke NBA rules by hitting up players for autographs, socializing with coaches and accepting meals and merchandise from teams.

"Tim described one referee's use of a team's practice facility to exercise and another's frequent tennis matches with a team's coach," the letter says.

 The letter also alleges that during a 2005 Rockets-Mavericks playoff series, "Team 3 lost the first two games in the series and Team 3's Owner complained to NBA officials. Team 3's Owner alleged that referees were letting a Team 4 player get away with illegal screens. NBA Executive Y told Referee Supervisor Z that the referees for that game were to enforce the screening rules strictly against that Team 4 player. Referee Supervisor Z informed the referees about his instructions. As an alternate referee for that game, Tim also received these instructions."

Mavs owner Mark Cuban did in fact complain after his team lost the first two games of the series, and Dallas went on to beat Houston in seven games. Jeff Van Gundy, then the coach of the Rockets, said that an NBA official had told him about the league's plan to closely monitor moving screens by Yao Ming, and Van Gundy was ultimately fined $100,000 for his comments regarding the situation. Van Gundy later backed off his comments.

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