You may have heard of the referee-gambling situation in the NBA. The man who is now wanted by the Feds (and the mob), happens to have a house in Lakewood Ranch. Apparently, allegedly, Tom Donaghy has been involved in tampering with games during his tenure in the NBA. But even stranger than that, I played basketball with this man at the ghetto YMCA when I first moved here.
Now I have played basketball at Furman University with an NFL safety, linebacker, WNBA star, but playing with an NBA ref wanted for fixing games and scores was obviously a first. However, I didn’t notice any ‘fishy’ activity at the time. But looking back upon those games, who knows if they were really ‘legit?’ I mean, how do I know he was really giving his all (he probably was-he was a tough player who didn’t like to lose)? But why was he playing so tough? Had he bet on himself? Since pick up basketball games are self regulated, and players become the ref’s, I’ll always wonder on the legitimacy of my wins and losses (mostly losses).
This could cast a dark cloud over pick up games of all sorts, from ultimate frisbee, church league softball, all the way down to jumping rope and tetherball (which is already deemed a ‘dirty’ sport by some these days). Who knows if the mob has infiltrated our ranks? We won’t. And that’s a thought-not a scary thought, or even an educated one; just a thought.