It's Official: NBA Refs Have Money on Hawks; Celtics Win Anyway

Sean Crowe@CroweKnowsSenior Writer IApril 30, 2008

After five games, two upset losses, many inexcusable non-calls against the Hawks, even more inexcusable calls against the Celtics, and many, many beers, I've come to the conclusion that NBA officials must have put a significant amount of money on the Atlanta Hawks. 

How else do you explain it?

Atlanta has taken 45 more free throws than the Celtics (155 to 110).   The Celtics have been called for 21 more personal fouls than the Hawks. 

Even in a Celtics’ victory, the officiating was so excruciatingly bad that the game was hard to watch. 

Do the officials want to keep the series close?  Did David Stern decide that getting the fans back in Atlanta was better for the NBA than a Celtic sweep?

The Hawks came out in game two and decided that their only chance against Boston was to beat up the Celtics' better players.  The Hawks did just that (nearly knocking Pierce out of the game), yet somehow it's the Celtics' players who have been in foul trouble all series long. 

In game four, Joe Johnson threw a punch and wasn’t called for a foul. 

Al Horford, who I used to like, has proven nothing more than an immature punk. 

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People want to get on Paul Pierce for making a hand gesture that “might” have meant something threatening, how about getting on Horford for taunting, playing dirty, and being an all around moron?  

Pointing to your muscle after hitting an open shot while down 14?  Way to show you're a moron, moron.

I’m tired of watching Rondo get knocked to the floor and Pierce get elbowed out of bounds on one side of the floor with no call, then seeing the Celtics get called for minimal contact on the other side of the floor.

It’s driving me completely insane. 

I could never be an NBA coach.  I'd go crazy.  

After the second foul on Pierce in ten seconds last night, the first of which should have been an offensive foul and the second was questionable at best, I would have picked up my chair and gone Stone Cold Steve Austin on the official. 

Bobby Knight would have had nothing on me.  He threw a chair.  I would have hit the ref with the chair, then I would have thrown him.

Or maybe I’m overreacting?  

Maybe Doc Rivers slept with every NBA officials’ sister and this is their payback?

Maybe, as the headline suggests, the officials bet on the Hawks? 

Anyway, at least the Celtics won.

Paul Pierce had his best game of the series.  My contention all season has been that Paul Pierce should get MVP consideration because of his importance to the Celtics. 

He’s the one non-Big they have who can post up, drive to the hoop, hit the outside shot, take anyone to the basket at any time, and create his own shot. 

If they’re struggling offensively, they can go to him and he can take over. 

Ray Allen is a great jump shooter who occasionally can drive to the hoop, but he’s not a physical post-up guy like Pierce. 

Garnett isn’t as dynamic an offensive player as Pierce. 

When Pierce gets going, Ray Allen gets his open shots and teams have to hold off double-teaming Garnett. 

Pierce is the key to the Celtics winning a championship. 

Ray Allen is going to be Ray Allen.  Kevin Garnett is going to be Kevin Garnett.  If Paul Pierce can be Paul Pierce, this Celtics team is going to be hard to beat.

With Paul Pierce being Paul Pierce, I fully expect the Celtics to wrap this up in Atlanta.  Nobody wants to see a game seven. 

Well, except maybe the NBA officials.

I’m SeanMC.

SeanMC is a Senior Writer at Bleacher Report. His archive can be found here. You can find everything he writes, including articles for other publications, here.

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