•The Derek Harper-Jo Jo English donnybrook in Game 3 of the Knick-Bull series spilling, before Stern's horrified eves, into the stands.
•Utah's clock operator allowing nine crucial seconds to tick off before starting the clock in the final moments of Game 4 of the Jazz-Rocket Western finals.
•The Pacers losing to the Hawks while scoring a record (low) 69 points.
•The Knicks losing to the Pacers while scoring a record (lower) 68 points.
•Referee Hue Hollins making a phantom, game-deciding foul call against Pippen in the final seconds of Chicago's Game 5 loss to New York.
•Referee Mike Mathis overreacting with a tension-killing flagrant-foul call on Indiana's Reggie Miller in the final seconds of Game 7 of the Knick-Pacer series.
•Spike Lee taunting Pippen and Miller.
•Miller taunting Spike Lee.
It wasn't long ago that the NBA could bill itself as good, clean family fun. Remember the old Rodney Dangerfield joke about going to the fights and seeing a hockey game break out? The new one is about the guy who goes to a garbagemen's convention and sees an NBA game break out. Trash talking, once a relatively innocuous part of the sport, has become a serious concern. "We need to address the taunting," says NBA vice president of operations Rod Thorn. "It's gotten to the point that the fan in the top row can see it. We have to call more technical fouls and throw more guys out of the game."
As for the low-scoring games—point totals were down nearly 5% in both the regular season and the playoffs compared with '92-93—there is some question whether they're the result of tight defense or abysmal shooting symptomatic of what USA Today columnist Bryan Burwell calls "an entire generation of slammin', jammin', no-jump-shooting, fundamentally unsound kids who have bought into the NBA's and Madison Avenue's shallow MTV-generated marketing of the game."