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Which league has the worst officials?

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It would appear the four major sports leagues in North America are in the midst of a competition to see which league has the worst officials.
The National Football League took an early lead when the NFC championship game was basically decided on a blown pass interference call which ultimately led to the Los Angeles Rams earning a berth in the Super Bowl instead of the New Orleans Saints.
Major League Baseball is still in the early stages of its season, but umpire Angel Hernandez is in midseason form.
In a recent game between the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays, New York hurler Masahiro Tanaka threw a pitch down the middle of the plate. It was clearly a strike to everyone who saw the pitch, except for Hernandez, who called it ball. It was so obviously a strike that Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez did a doubletake, looking back at Hernandez before throwing the ball back to Tanaka.
The Jays benefited from the call as Randall Grichuk sent the very next pitch over the wall for a home run.
But the National Hockey League and National Basketball Association are waaay out in front of their counterparts when it comes to bad officiating.
And you don’t even have to watch an entire game to see that.
In the NHL, the most recent blown call came in game five of the Stanley Cup finals when St. Louis Blues forward Tyler Bozak tripped Boston Bruins defenceman Noel Acciari right in front of the referee.
Instead of a penalty call, play continued and, seconds later, St. Louis scored what proved to be the game winning goal in a 2-1 win, giving the Blues a 3-2 series lead and the chance to win the Stanley Cup on home ice.
Boston, of course staved off elimination with a 5-1 win, forcing a game seven, Wednesday in Boston.
That was only the most recent blunder by NHL refs. If you have watched any of this year’s playoffs, you know there have been plenty of others.
Right now, I would probably put the NBA officials at the top of the list of worst officials.
The most basic rule in basketball is traveling. That is when a player takes more than two steps without dribbling the ball.
It is so rarely called nowadays, that you have to wonder if it is still a rule in the NBA.
As if that isn’t bad enough, there are all kinds of fouls that are committed but don’t get called. Luckily, none of these non-calls have yet to factor into whether a team wins or loses, but it is just a matter of time.
Speaking of the NBA playoffs, as I write this early Monday afternoon, the Raptors are just a few hours away from possibly winning their first NBA title.
American sportcasters are taken aback at the support the Raptors are receiving from fans. Following Friday’s game four victory, more than 2,000 Raptor fans stuck around Oracle Arena in Oakland, chanting “We, the North” and singing O Canada.
Many broadcasters, including former NBA stars, have said they have never seen anything like that before.
That kind of support is nothing new to Canadians, because you see it every year during the NHL playoffs.
•••
Saw a bit of shocking news while perusing Twitter, Sunday night before going to bed.
Former Boston Red Sox star David Ortiz was shot and wounded in his hometown of Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic, Sunday.
Ortiz was shot in the back and lower abdomen region and underwent six hours of surgery. He is expected to make a full recovery.

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Doug Zywina
REPORTER