The National Basketball Referees Association ratified a new seven-year collective bargaining agreement with the NBA, keeping labor peace between the two sides through the 2022 season.
The NBRA’s new CBA with the league replaces the one that had been set to expire at the end of next season.
"The NBA takes great pride in our world-class referee program and we are pleased to extend the league's partnership with the NBRA for another seven years," NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement.
Each of the past 40 full-time officials that have been hired by the NBA since the 2001 season have come through the National Basketball Development League training program and there is an increased scrutiny of the league’s officials to make sure that plays are called correctly.
One instance involved a few plays at the end of Game 2 of the NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors, when the league admitted that LeBron James should have been called for traveling in the overtime period and an official missed two foul calls that should have gone against Draymond Green. Cleveland won Game 2 in overtime, but the Warriors eventually won the series in six games, capturing their first NBA title in 40 years.
Before last season, the league instituted new rules, including modifying instant replay to include replay triggers that are now in effect for the last two minutes of regulation and the last two minutes of overtime period(s).
"Recent efforts including state-of-the-art development and training programs, improved use of instant replay through the NBA Replay Center and unprecedented transparency concerning call accuracy have been instrumental in strengthening the game," Silver said. "We commend our officials for embracing these technological innovations and thank them for the high level of professionalism with which they perform their jobs."
- Scooby Axson