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It’s not Stephen Jackson, it’s those referees that have it in for him

Feb 11, 2011, 2:59 PM EDT

Stephen Jackson, Mark Ayotte

Stephen Jackson will take your technical and not apologize for his actions. He owned up to his situation.

His agent, he’s more conspiracy theorist, and that comes across when he spoke with ESPN. It is clear the referees are singling him out, agent Mark Stevens said.

“The inconsistency of the referees’ calls or non-calls in close games is becoming questionable,” Stevens said in a telephone interview on Thursday. “It looks like they’re taking the player and/or his personality into account when deciding whether or not to make calls.”

“The referees are the law enforcement arm of the game,” Stevens said. “They enforce the rules and regulations that the players must abide by. However, just as profiling is wrong in police work, we must make sure that the league does not do personal profiling of certain players.

“I understand that my player has had past conflicts with the referees, but their job is to be as fair as possible when calling the game, regardless of any past issues with a player.”

I don’t think Stevens is totally wrong here. The calling of the “respect the game” technicals is wildly inconsistent. The first thing to pop into mind is the double given at the end of the Mavericks and Kings game this week, where Tyson Chandler and DeMarcus Cousins got tossed for trying to get position for a free throw rebound (there was nothing on that play that doesn’t happen a dozen times a game). It ended up being Cousin’s sixth foul and took him out at the end of a close game.

I’d also agree certain players seem to get T’d up more quickly for doing less. Dwight Howard gets a lot of borderline calls against him. Maybe Jackson does, too.

But Jackson’s problem isn’t the first tech he draws, it’s that he doesn’t stop talking and complaining and that’s when he draws the second. And gets tossed. That one is on Jackson, not the official. When you are the team’s leading scorer you need to keep a cool enough head to stay on the floor. Jackson may get picked on, but if he’s to be a true leader he has to rise above it.

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