It’s going to happen, because the league is likely going to suspend Rajon Rondo for his minor—and seemingly unintended—bumping of referee Marc Davis on Sunday night.
According to a report by ESPN’s Chris Forsberg, commissioner David Stern appeared on ESPN Radio with Colin Cowherd and implied that the superstar point guard will be getting hit with a suspension.
“I don’t want to pre-judge on what the recommendation is going to be,” Stern said. “But as a fan, he obviously bumped him. And you know what happens with respect to that.”
There have been three instances this season when a player or coach has been suspended for a game for bumping a referee.
“We have a hard and fast rule,” Stern said. “Unless somebody trips you and sends you into him, nobody touches a referee. That’s the proposition.”
Look closely at the footage, and you can see that Rondo was attempting to argue a crucial call in the final minute with the official. Then notice how his feet made contact with Brandon Bass’ (who was on the floor after diving for a loose ball) shoes.
That forced Rajon to stumble and slightly brush up against the referee. He was immediately ejected for the contact.
Boston went on to lose the game 83-74, and it would not have been nearly that close if not for Rondo. He put up 20 points, dished 11 assists, grabbed four rebounds and had four steals in the contest.
Star shooting guard Ray Allen was not available for that game, and his status is currently unknown for Game 2. This is a team that does not have the luxury of depth, and missing two starters will certainly doom them.
It’s a shame that the league is likely going to force the NBA's leading assist man to the bench for a crucial game on the road in Atlanta. It will likely swing the series in the Hawks' favor and give them an unfair advantage that they simply do not deserve.