Thursday, April 30, 2009
I have a bunch of sites feeded through my google reader, one of which is the AOL Fanhouse. I peruse that feed daily and one thing always astonishes me, every time I see a title that is douchie it's Jay Marrioti. This morning we get, Rondo in, Howard Out: Double Standard. Because a foul is obviously the same as turning around and throwing an elbow at somebodies head in frustration. Let's play Fire Joe Morgan and pick a part pieces of his article.
Rondo leaped, popped him in the mouth, drew blood when Miller's tooth cut his lip, forced him to get a stitch job and left him so woozy that his eyeballs were peeking out of his eardrums.
It's called a foul. Sometimes you get hit in the head in basketball. Ask Grutt, I go for the ball all the time and probably smash him in the face 2 or 3 times a game.
It should have been whistled as a flagrant foul, which would have given the Chicago Bulls two free throws and possession of the ball. With Miller in no condition to attempt foul shots, a flagrant also would have let the Bulls pick a replacement shooter -- Ben Gordon, Kirk Hinrich -- to maybe make the two shots that Miller wound up missing.
No condition to shoot foul shots? He had a fat lip, it's not like he was hit by Mike Tyson in his prime. Rajon Rondo weighs 170 pounds soaking wet.
"You have to go for the basketball, and he didn't come near the ball. He came right across his face," said Bulls coach Vinny Del Negro, rightfully defending his player. "I agree that it's a hard playoff foul, but it's still a flagrant and you have to call it a flagrant."
Quote the Bulls coach as if he's a viable source. He might be jaded don't you think?
Said Miller: "I understand hard fouls. But when you get hit in the mouth over the shoulders, that stuff just gets old after a while."
And quote the guy who got fouled as well and then choked. Wow what non-biased sources.
"We felt Rondo was making a basketball play and going for the basketball after a blown defensive assignment by the Celtic team," said Stu Jackson, the NBA's vice president of operations. "In terms of the criteria that we use to evaluate a flagrant foul penalty one, generally we like to consider whether or not there was a windup, an appropriate level of impact and a follow-through. And with this foul, we didn't see a windup, nor did he follow through. So for that reason, we're not going to upgrade this foul to a flagrant foul penalty one."
Ok quote the league's suspension guru. Makes sense.
Why was Howard suspended and Rondo not even punished? Why the double standard? Shouldn't the Bulls and Magic wonder why Rondo gets to play his Game 6 and Howard doesn't?
Probably because Howard threw an elbow not during the course of play at the head of his opponent while Rondo was deemed to go for the ball and foul his opponent. There's a big fucking difference between trying to knock out your opponent pre-meditated and fouling someone.
And if the roles were reversed -- Miller as the perpetrator, Rondo as the victim -- don't you think Miller would have been flagrantly flagged?
We aren't far removed from the Tim Donaghy point-shaving scandal that, while apparently an isolated case, red-flagged some suspicions about hanky-panky. As a difficult game to officiate, pro basketball always will have a gray area when it comes to calls. But it's inconceivable that on the very same night in the playoffs, one hard shot to the head results in a suspension while another hard shot to the head warrants no action.
Intent, jackass. Do you not understand the difference between intent to take someones head off and intent to foul someone in the arm?
Jackson is dead wrong about Rondo going after the ball. In the final seconds of overtime, with Miller on an unimpeded path to a game-tying basket, Rondo turned into one of Bill Belichick's linebackers on a goal-line tackling mission and went straight for the face.
Football players don't go for the face. That's a 15 yard penalty.
Yet the league felt compelled to issue the one-game suspension anyway, sticking to the letter of the law. "They saw the elbow thrown but they couldn't determine whether or not the elbow actually made contact with Dalembert," Jackson said. "This was an elbow that was thrown that made contact above the shoulders and by rule there's an automatic suspension."
Yep no shit. He threw an elbow with intent at a guys face. An elbow at the head is effectively a punch, this is entirely different than fouling someone during the course of a game.
But Rondo can slam a player in the face with his arm and get a pass? I don't understand the vast differences in foul severity, especially when one can argue that Rondo's shot effectively cost Chicago the game.
A) It didn't cost them the game, Miller bricking the free throws did. You don't understand the differences cause you're an idiot. In one circumstance a guy tries to make a basketball foul and hits a guy in the face. In the other a guy turns after a made bucket and throws an unnecessary elbow at a guys head. They aren't anything a like in the slightest. And this is why you Jay, are a Moron.