2021 NBA Finals: League Announces Referees for Bucks vs. Suns Matchup

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVJuly 5, 2021

Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images

The NBA named the 14 referees who will be assigned to the upcoming NBA Finals between the Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks:

Scott Foster is the most experienced of the group with 20 Finals games on his resume. Tony Brothers, James Capers and Marc Davis are all entering their 10th career NBA Finals. Courtney Kirkland, James Williams and Sean Wright will be making their first trip to this round.

"Being selected to work The Finals is the top honor for an NBA official," NBA President of League Operations Byron Spruell said in a statement. "This group of officials has earned the right to represent the NBA by way of their outstanding work during this year’s playoffs."

The presence of Foster will likely be the biggest story among the officials, especially considering his history with Suns star Chris Paul. Earlier this postseason, the veteran point guard alluded to his team's poor record when Foster refs the game:

Anthony Slater @anthonyVslater

Chris Paul redirected the end of his final three press conference questions tonight to the same stat: "11 games in a row." Paul's teams have lost 11 straight playoff games refereed by Scott Foster. <a href="https://t.co/BvbZTGe3eX">pic.twitter.com/BvbZTGe3eX</a>

The Suns did break this streak in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals against the Los Angeles Clippers, although Paul was inactive while in the league's health and safety protocols.

As Paul enters the first NBA Finals of his career, the referee assignment could be on his mind.

The first-time officials are also notable as they achieve a high honor after working their way to the top. Williams and Wright each have more than 10 years in the NBA, while Kirkland is in his 21st season in the NBA and has officiated over 1,000 regular-season games.

Individual game assignments will be announced on the morning of each game.


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