Thursday, October 8, 2009
The NBA figured they would have some issues using replacement officials during the referee lockout, but they did not think this would occur. During the latest Miami Heat pre-season game, a confused replacement official called Dwyane Wade for a facemask penalty.
"At first I thought he was joking," said a frustrated Wade, "but then he marked off a 15 yard penalty. Still not quite sure how that worked on a basketball court, and then he gave the ball to the other team. It was weird."
Rick Cole, the replacement official, says that it is just part of adjusting to the NBA game.
"It's just part of getting used to basketball and the speed and skill of these athletes. Usually I referee junior high football, so I guess I forgot where I was. Hopefully my pee wee hockey experience doesn't get me in trouble where I try to give Kobe Bryant a 2 minute penalty for slashing or something."