David Aldridge of TNT explored changes NBA referees will face in the future, as well as modifications that have already been implemented. One change that has been met with praise, Aldridge writes, is postgame feedback coaches can write regarding a referee’s performance. Mavs coach Rick Carlisle called the addition “very valuable,” adding “Constant feedback in essentially real time throughout the season keeps everyone current.” Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry concurred: “I have used it, and it’s good to be able to send in comments about the game so quickly.”
The league has also used four (or five) man referee crews at the D-League level, citing the benefits of “having an extra set of eyes on the floor.” Long Island Nets coach Ronald Nored was neutral toward having extra officials.
“It gave us a very open and low-pressure environment to experiment with it,” Nored said. “From a coaching standpoint, to be honest, there was nothing that stuck out in my mind where I would say it was a bad system or there was something negative.”
More from around the game…
- Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau appreciates the NBA’s efforts to improve officiating. “Ours is a hard game to officiate, it really is,” Thibodeau told Jerry Zgoda of the Star Tribune. “Our players are so good, it’s hard to see in real time. A lot of it is judgment. … It’s a tough job. We feel the game is in a great place, but you’re always looking for ways to improve the game.”
- Chris Reichert of The Step Back listed the top prospects still available in the D-League. Reichert excluded prospects still under team control, such as Dakari Johnson and Abdel Nader. Reichert names Pierre Jackson the most “electric” player of the season, and compared Jalen Jones to JaMychal Green of the Grizzlies. Reichert’s #9 pick, Jordan Crawford, was signed to a 10-day contract by the Pelicans today.
- The BIG3 announced their next round of players set to enter the draft: Josh Childress, Reggie Evans, Larry Hughes, Ivan Johnson, and Brian Scalabrine (press release). Of the recent additions, Evans holds the most recent NBA experience; appearing in 47 games for the 2014/15 Kings. Childress played recent NBA basketball as well, playing four games with the Pelicans in 2013/14.
- The NBA won’t discipline J.R. Smith for getting into a verbal altercation with Rodney McGruder and Dion Waiters after a recent loss. What’s more, the Cavaliers won’t fine Smith for the post-game incident. Per Dave McMenamin of ESPN, Smith “took umbrage with a late dunk by McGruder over Channing Frye that McGruder punctuated by pushing Frye in the back.”