In light of MLB umpire Joe West’s conflict with White Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle and manager Ozzie Guillen, I thought it might be fun to look back at some of the officials in sports some of us love to hate. These are some of the guys that seem to make the game about them and their jobs as officials.
Joe West, MLB umpire
I’ll start with the man of the hour, Mr. Joe West. As Ozzie Guillen delicately put it after Wednesday’s victory over the Indians, “…people don’t come to see Joe West [expletive deleted] umpire.” West has now tossed Guillen 3 times over the course of Guillen’s managerial career.
Hue Hollins, NBA referee
Bulls fans still have bad thoughts for Hollins, who called a questionable shooting foul on Scottie Pippen in the closing moments of Game 5 of the 1994 Eastern Conference Semifinals. Hubert Davis nailed a couple free throws, and the Knicks would defeat the Bulls in 7 games, denying the Bulls a chance for four consecutive championships.
Phil Cuzzi, MLB umpire
The real nemesis of Ozzie Guillen in the world of umpires isn’t Joe West, but Cuzzi, who once tossed Guillen out of a game at Yankee Stadium for arguing a check-swing call. Guillen later told reporters, “He don’t like me, I don’t like him.”
Steve Javie, NBA referee
If you want your officials to think they are the show, look no further than Javie, a man who once ejected a mascot for trying to rile up a home crowd. He’s also tossed a radio broadcaster in Portland critical of his calls and used to hand out technical fouls about as often as he blows his whistle. With reports suggesting Javie may retire, what will he do without the bright lights of the NBA?
Tim Donaghy, NBA referee
Man, these NBA refs are really getting a rough ride. I wonder what this guy did to be on this list?
Bill Parkinson, NFL instant replay official
I would think, or hope anyway, that 20 years removed, Bears fans don’t hate Parkinson anymore. After reviewing the controversial play, he waived off an over the line of scrimmage penalty and upheld Don Majkowski’s touchdown to beat the Bears 14-13 in November of 1989.
Ed Hochuli, NFL referee
I doubt there are many in Chicago who dislike Hochuli. He’s visited the “Boers and Bernstein” show before and seems like a swell guy. None of this matters to San Diego Charger fans however, as they watched him blow an inadvertent whistle as Jay Cutler was fumbling away the football with less than 2 minutes left in the game. Denver would go onto win 39-38, and Hochuli would later tell Charger Head Coach Norv Turner, “I blew it.”
At least he’s got those well-defined arms.
Which officials get your blood boiling?