A couple notes on the Tim Donaghy scandal. Donaghy, as you probably know, is the NBA ref accused by the FBI of shaving points in NBA games in order to allay his financial troubles.
Donaghy, whose reasons for debt remain unclear, but are assumed to be gambling related, reportedly took orders from bookies with ties to the mob who threatened to kill him if he didn’t cooperate.
Donaghy has worked in the league for awhile now and he’s probably done a lot of things wrong that we’ll soon find out about. But his biggest disservice, at least to the fans, has to be his part in the horrifically officiated third game of the Spurs-Suns series in Round 2 of the NBA Playoffs.
Donaghy worked the game, a 108-101 San Antonio win that reeked of Spurs’ favoritism, with Greg Willard and Eddie F. Rush, the whole crew even chastised the next day by supposed NBA aficionado and respected ESPN columnist Bill Simmons.
Now the YouTube clips from that night have started to surface, with no doubt more on the way. The first morsels of evidence we have are two clips depicting two separate bogus calls taped off the Spanish broadcast of the game.
Watch the footage and you’ll see both calls were made by — tada! — Tim Donaghy!
Here’s the first. A foul on Amare Stoudemire contesting a Tim Duncan shot. On the replay, Amare appears to get all ball, not bumping Duncan until after the shot is blocked. Watch as Suns coach Mike D’Antoni argues with Donaghy on the sideline. What the hell do you think is being said here???? “Sorry coach, but I got San Antonio tonight.”
In the second clip — again in Spanish for some reason, but who cares — Duncan returns the favor to Amare, fouling the Suns big man on his way up for a dunk. Only this time the call isn’t made. The referee closest to the play: Tim F’n Donaghy.
The Spurs of course march right back down the court and get to the line on a weak Raja Bell foul on Manu Ginobili. Again, Donaghy gets into it with D’Antoni, the beef probably pertaining more to the non-call on Duncan than the foul given to Bell.
The third clip is a little longer and, thankfully, the English version of the broadcast. It shows the call getting the most ink these days: the verrry late shooting foul awarded to Ginobili. Simmons alludes to this clip in his ESPN piece ripping the NBA, although he doesn’t post the link for some reason (makes you wonder if that was an order from higher up), noting that you can actually hear the announcers openly question the absurdity of the call.
The last link I accidentally discovered when doing a Google Image search on Donaghy. It’s a website for Dr. Siepser’ Laser EyeCare, an eyesight correctional business based in Philadelphia, containing satisfied testimonies from Siepser’s laser surgery patients. Guess who one of them is?? Located second from the bottom. That’s right, NBA referee Tim Donaghy. Proud recipient of new vision and satisfied customer of Siepser. You’d think a referee would need good eyes, right? Too bad Siepser doesn’t specialize in conscience-corrective surgery.
(Note: The webmasters for this site removed Donaghy’s testimony. Other people must have stumbled upon it while surfing the web for info on Donaghy like I did. I almost feel bad for them. You would have thought he was a great person to have on there. Anyway, his quote was unreal. It read something like he was very pleased with the surgery, had to be because of the importance of vision in his profession, blah blah blah. Very ironic. Sorry if you didn’t get to see it.
If you Google Image his name, the link to his picture on the site still comes up, though. It’s Donaghy sitting in some sort of office. A little bit bigger than a jail cell, I think.)