It’s no secret that things haven’t been too peachy between players and officials in the NBA.
And while the NBA doesn’t stand alone from other leagues in that regard, the issue has become so pervasive across the league that a meeting was called in December to address the tension.
Oklahoma City Thunder forward Carmelo Anthony has been in the league for 15 seasons and has had his fair share of confrontation with refs. And the veteran noted to ESPN’s Royce Young that the strife between the two sides ultimately comes down to dialogue.
“The game has changed a lot since I came in 15 years ago, the players and the officials had that dialogue, whether it was good or whether it was bad, there was always a point where they would let you get a little steam off, and then would come to you and say that’s enough, let’s move on,” Anthony told Young.
“And now, the trigger is too quick,” Anthony continued. “You look at somebody wrong, you get a technical foul. You say one wrong thing, you get a technical foul. So I think that’s the difference from when I came in, the dialogue and communication and the relationship the players and officials (had) when I first came in and from now is a lot different.”
While his depiction of trigger-happy officials may err on the side of dramatic, he certainly wouldn’t stand alone in that assertion amongst his peers, and it’s not an unfounded claim either.
And although progress may be made at some point to build more mutual respect, to address it during the season likely presents a logistical challenge and would be hard to enforce, so the frustration may continue at its current rate — at the very least — for the rest of the season.