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The NBA
Jackie MacMullan
June 15, 1998
Worth a Gamble?German wunderkind Dirk Nowitzki was the talk of predraft camp
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June 15, 1998

The Nba

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Nobody left a better impression than Bryce Drew, one of Valparaiso's NCAA tournament heroes, who proved he can play point guard at the NBA level and should benefit from a draft thin in playmakers. Felipe Lopez, the enigmatic guard from St. John's also was in Chicago, but he alternately hurt and helped himself, depending on which day coaches saw him, leaving assessments of his NBA potential as murky as ever. At least Lopez suited up. Arizona's Michael Dickerson, confident he was already a surefire top-15 selection—a presumption with which few scouts concur—skipped Chicago and may have hurt his standing on draft day.

Eye on the Finals
Myths, Realities Of Officiating

In 1994, Jack Madden, recognized as one of the best referees in history, retired after having presided over 35 NBA Finals games. He continues to follow the sport closely, and we checked in with Madden for his views on refereeing a Bulls-Jazz series.

SI: Fans and players have the perception that referees are ready with a makeup call when a clearly bad call has been made on the other end of the floor. Is that true?

MADDEN: NO, that's a myth. If we did that, we'd make a travesty of the game. We're human. Sometimes we miss calls. But if we called a makeup for everything we missed, we'd be trying to even die score all night.

SI: So is it also a myth that Michael Jordan gets away with more than most players?

MADDEN: There's some truth to that. Michael Jordan is the greatest player I've ever seen. He's so quick with his feet that he gets away with walking an unbelievable number of times, especially when he's in the post, with his back to the basket.

SI: Why don't officials call it?

MADDEN: Sometimes his feet move too fast [for the official to detect the violation], and sometimes the refs are concentrating on what the defensive player is doing.

SI: Did you nail Jordan for traveling?

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