With LeBron James’ 2nd Strike at Referees, About Time Adam Silver Does Something About Officiating

Published 11/09/2023, 9:20 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

Despite LeBron James‘ domination on both ends of the court, the Los Angeles Lakers found themselves in losing side on several occasions. The 4x NBA Champion alongside his fans already raised their concerns about refs’ officiating. This isn’t new for James to take a dig at the referees for their blunders on the court. Interestingly, two days after, he made a controversial opinion on the refs, he once again went all out. This time, it wasn’t for him, but a fellow baller.

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A few days ago, the Lakers took on the Miami Heat in a close encounter. The game went neck-to-neck till the last second and the Heat took the win home. On top of it, the LA side has two controversial referee calls going against them. Head coach Darvin Ham received a tech for arguing and D’Angelo Russell received two techs for a same sequence. While James didn’t receive a proper response for his concern, a call from the recent Milwaukee Bucks game further infuriated him.

LeBron James gives strike two

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Following the Heat loss, LeBron James said, “I think some of the things we couldn’t control controlled the game a little bit in the fourth quarter, it’s unfortunate,” reported Marca. While the NBA world processed James’ direct jab at the refs, he gave the second strike to support the Greek Freak.

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During the Milwaukee Bucks‘ Wednesday night victory against the Detroit Pistons, Giannis Antetokounmpo received two techs and was ejected out of the game. The second tech call blew out of proportion, as the refs gave the call after Giannis stared down at a Pistons’ player, following a dunk.

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Following that, a X user shared the video clip along with a caption which read, Too bad you @bucks can’t use a coach’s challenge on this crap. ⁦@Giannis_An34⁩ glared at him momentarily, so what…”

However, the tweet received a reply from the superstar. James replied to the tweet with a face-palming emoji. The concerns about officiating keeps rising. Will Adam Silver have a resolution for this issue?

Even though the stars of the game called out the refs’ blunders on the court several times, the league hasn’t changed much in the last few years.

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Not to undermine the introduction of official Coach’s Challenge to the system, but at the same time, it has its own downside. Let’s find out more in detail.

Downside of Coach’s Challenge

During the 2019-20 season, the league introduced the ‘Coach’s challenge’ rule as an upper hand to the players. If a team’s coach finds a ref’s call to be doubtful, an instant replay can be triggered to overturn the decision. It has come in handy for the team several times. However, the downside of this feature is that the coach can use it only after a ref’s call and cannot halt the game for a challenge without a ref’s whistle.

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One of the recent examples of this downside is from the Wednesday night game between the GSW and Denver Nuggets. Two quarters into the game, Stephen Curry went for a floater and was immediately rejected by a Nuggets defender. Curry immediately went up and argued for a goal-tending call. Following him, coach Steve Kerr also pleaded for the call. However, immediately in transition, the Nuggets got goal-tending points.

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Kerr couldn’t use the challenge because the referee didn’t make any call after Curry was rejected. The replays clearly showed that the Nuggets player pushed the ball away after it touched the board. Eventually, this call cost the game for the Dubs. The league could consider a coach’s challenge without a referee’s call to avoid such mistakes.

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Should the league bring in reformation in officiating? Let us know some of the worst officiating blunders in the comments below.

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Written by:

Shahul Hameed

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Shahul Hameed is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports, where he brings his passion for sports and entertainment journalism to life. With a Master's Degree in journalism from a reputed institute and years of experience in the industry, Shahul always strives to provide insightful and astute coverage of the NBA to the fans. Shahul's love for sports writing dates back to his college days.
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Edited by:

Sameen Nawathe

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