God, Derek Fisher Sucks

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Last night referee Bob Delaney ruined an incredible game between the Warriors and Lakers with a phantom offensive foul, which he was goaded into by a Derek Fisher flop. In case you missed it: Warriors down 2 with the ball, sideline out of bounds, 4 seconds left in OT. During the out-of-bounds play, Fisher trips, falls down, and drags Monta Ellis to the ground with him, and somehow Delaney — overcome by the spirit of Joey Crawford — jumps in and whistles Monta for the foul. Game Lakers. Longer recap here, video here.

There’s not much more to say about the call, infuriating as it was, other than “Fuck the Lakers and fuck the refs” (fans’ reaction) or “It is what it is, I don’t want to get fined” (players’ and coaches’ refrain). What is hard to figure here is why Derek Fisher’s bullshit always gets a pass. The guy’s been the league’s premier flopper dating back to the Kobe-Shaq era, and no one ever says a thing about it, except Don Nelson: “I don’t know why [Delaney] would call something like that,” he said after the game. “Especially [for] a flopper. Usually they just ignore all that stuff.”

Which is why it’s so baffling that Fisher keeps getting these calls — from impossible-to-believe stuff like this to letting him get away with more sliding charges than Duke UCLA. That a ref could ever see Fisher fall to the ground and give him the benefit of the doubt is simply hard to believe. It’s actually gotten to the point where Fisher wasn’t even trying to sell it and got the call — he was quoted after the game saying the take-down should have been a no-call.

Why? Seriously, why? It’s not like his coattail-riding game is a joy to watch. Is it because he’s known as a decent guy off the court? Is it just because he’s on the Lakers and ABC is fully aroused by the hype? Is Stern calling this in like the 2006 Finals? What’s going on here? The refs aren’t dumb, they rewatch the games, they know how often he’s duped them. WHY? Screw it, I said it:

West Coast bias.

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