Following in the lead of Mike Pereira, former NBA referee Steve Javie has joined ESPN.
Sports Illustrated reported Sunday that Javie will serve as a rules analyst for ESPN during pre-and-postgame coverage of the NBA Finals. Javie retired from the NBA after the 2010-11 season.
Javie is not the first NBA referee to join the broadcasting ranks. In the 1970s, Mendy Rudolph served as an NBA analyst for CBS.
Currently, Ronnie Nunn hosts a show about officiating on NBA TV.
The addition of Javie should do little to quell the annual cacophony of complaints about NBA referees. The NBA is plagued by fans and local media types who simply cannot fathom that their favorite team could lose fair-and-square, and thus prefer to believe David Stern is pulling the strings.
Still, Javie hopes to provide a perspective that he says is missing in NBA coverage. “[F]ans of the NBA have never heard from or been given the perspective from the officials’ point of view,” he told Sports Illustrated. “I’m hoping for positive feedback because I believe it’s something that’s been missing.”
(Sunday’s news from Sports Illustrated)