Don't Blame the Refs, Blame NBA Hotheads for Playoff Whistles

Matt ShetlerCorrespondent IJune 5, 2012

BOSTON, MA - JUNE 01:  Kevin Garnett #5 of the Boston Celtics reacts in the first half against the Miami Heat in Game Three of the Eastern Conference Finals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on June 1, 2012 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The officiating in the NBA playoffs, especially in the Eastern Conference finals, has been talked about more than anyone should be talking about officials this time of year.

Yet while I will be the first to admit that the officiating has been suspect at times throughout the entire postseason, the four teams remaining shouldn't be blaming the refs for any of their problems. Instead maybe they should look in the mirror and blame the hotheads that the fouls are being whistled on.

Everyone knows that superstars get the benefit of the doubt when it comes to getting calls.

Is it fair? Probably not, but that's the way it has always been and it will never change.

But in the same way a superstar's reputation can play to his advantage in getting calls, the negative reputation of some players can play as a big disadvantage in having calls go against them.

You look at players such as Rajon Rondo, Kendrick Perkins, Kevin Garnett and others who have the reputation of always complaining and arguing calls—well then it doesn't actually come as much of a surprise that they get whistled a lot.

Not to make excuses for the officials, but their job has become much tougher when players flop as frequently as often as Tim Tebow says the words 'I'm excited." It's near impossible for an official to call a game the way it's meant to be called.

Reputations come into play much more than they should, but that's the reality of things.

What's a ref supposed to do when a superstar such as LeBron turns in horrible acting performances as he attempts to flop and draw calls?

It's easy to say officials should make the correct calls, but the sad part is that there's way more to it than simply calling what one sees with his eyes.

The sad part is that reputations, both good and bad, come into play. The always have, and they always will.

How else can you explain that an aggressive defender such as LBJ, who commits reaching fouls a ton, never fouled out of a game in a Miami uniform in the two years he's been there until Sunday night?

Because it's all about reputation, and he's a guy that the NBA wants its fans to see on the floor rather than sitting on the bench watching in the fourth quarter.

NBA games have never been called correctly, and it will never change.

So next time your team gets screwed (and it will likely happen sooner, rather than later), don't blame the refs. Instead blame the league for allowing players' reputations to come into play a lot more than they should.