National sports briefs: Fouls, tensions rise with NBA’s replacement referees
CHARLOTTE ó Larry Brown preaches to any and everyone to play the game the right way.
So the sometimes-cranky Charlotte Bobcats coach is having a hard time adjusting to the inexperienced replacement officials calling a foul on seemingly every other possession.
Brown says it makes it hard to play. Period.
“It’s like the summer league games,” Brown said Tuesday, referring to where most of the new officials have worked. “I’ve always had issue with that. You never get to see the kids play. There’s always fouls being called.”
Statistics prove his point. According to STATS LLC, there have been average of 57.5 personal fouls per game through Monday’s exhibition schedule. That compares to 49 fouls per game in the preseason with the regular referees last year. There were 42 fouls a game in the regular season in 2008-09.
The average is even higher in the Bobcats’ four exhibition games. There were 77 fouls and 95 free throws in the New Orleans-Charlotte game last week. The crew Monday night called 61 fouls and five technicals in Charlotte’s game at Atlanta.
Brown was ejected, one of the early uncomfortable moments for the league since it locked out the regular referees in a labor dispute.
Kevin Scott, who has worked in the NBA Development League, whistled Brown for two technical fouls, then called for security when Brown lingered on the court.
Brown, who picked up a technical foul in another game Scott worked last week, eventually left for the locker room without an escort.
“I don’t want to get into that,” Brown said when asked a day later of the ejection, before adding that “I’m sure I did” deserve to get tossed.
NBA spokesman Tim Frank said they had no problem with Scott calling security as the league prepares to perhaps play regular-season games with replacement officials for the first time since 1995. There have been no talks since the referees union rejected the NBA’s latest offer two weeks ago.
“Without getting myself in trouble, I think the older refs knew how to not take the rules literally all the time. It created a flow,” Bobcats guard Raja Bell said. “Some of that stuff they’re going to let go for the benefit of a good flow to the game. I think the younger guys, it’s not unlike an NBA player, you have to learn the rhythm of the game.”
LEXINGTON, Ky. ó Former men’s basketball coach Billy Gillispie and the University of Kentucky have settled their cases over his firing for nearly $3 million, the school said Tuesday.
Gillispie was dismissed earlier this year and sued for breach of contract and fraud in May, seeking at least $6 million. The university countersued. He had not signed a contract during his two years coaching the Wildcats to a 40-27 record but was working under a memorandum of understanding.
* ATLANTA ó Georgia Tech point guard Moe Miller continues to suffer the effects of a concussion he suffered in a car wreck last month and may not be cleared to join the start of practice this week.
It is Miller’s third concussion in less than a year.
Another guard, senior D’Andre Bell, returns after missing last season. Bell has been cleared to play after he was diagnosed last year with spinal stenosis, a congenital condition.
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. ó NASCAR has suspended a Nationwide Series crew member for violating its toughened substance abuse policy.
Robert Good, a crew member for the No. 26 Dodge team owned by Dusty Whitney, was suspended indefinitely. He committed the violation on Oct. 9. Driver Michael McDowell piloted the No. 26 to a 32nd place finish in last weekend’s race at Auto Club Speedway.
The No. 26 car is currently 31st in the owner’s standings heading into Friday’s race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.
NASCAR has suspended 11 crew members this season. Jeremy Mayfield is the only driver to be suspended since NASCAR began random testing this year.
ARLINGTON, Va. ó U.S. national team forward Charlie Davies had several broken bones and a lacerated bladder after a one-vehicle accident Tuesday in which another person was killed.
Davies underwent several hours of surgery at Washington Hospital Center Medstar, where he was listed in serious but stable condition. The injuries make it unlikely Davis will play in next year’s World Cup.
The tibia and femur in Davies’ right leg were broken. He also sustained facial fractures and a fracture in his left elbow in the accident, which took place at about 3:15 a.m. in the suburbs of the nation’s capital.
The accident claimed the life of Ashley J. Roberta, 22, of Phoenix, Md., according to U.S. Park Police Sgt. David Schlosser. The cause of the accident remained under investigation.