The NBA has an issue with some of its refs. I'm going to be diplomatic here and say that some of them clearly feel like they deserve some fo the spotlight. Ken Mauer has shown time and time again that he's one of those guys.
Take, for instance, last night's game in Phoenix.
With the game long having been decided and the Thunder leading by 20 points with 1:05 remaining, seldom-used Zabian Dowdell received two quick technicals for comments he made to the officials and was ejected, and Aaron Brooks immediately followed suit.
Zabian Dowdell says he was disrespected… by this comment:
Did Ken Mauer really provoke a guy then toss him when he responded? I don't even care what the response was. When someone tells you you're "being a little bitch"… especially when you're in the heat of a game… you're going to say something. If Mauer really did say that… and the way everyone is talking after the game I wouldn't doubt that he did… then he needs to go. Suspend him for the rest of the regular season and don't assign him to any playoff games.
For some reason, there's a group of NBA officials that seem to take their cue from MLB umpires and interject themselves into the game much more than they should. I get it… the job is insanely difficult. 10 huge guys out there flying around the court… it's hard to catch everything. And after every play you've got someone grimacing at you abou the foul you just did or didn't call. I get all of that. But that doesn't mean you are allowed to cross that line. You can't become part of the game. You have to live on its periphery. I think Mauer stopped getting that a long time ago.
Follow that link for video of Aaron Brooks sort of grabbing his crotch in front of Mauer to get himself tossed.