The PBA has suspended the entire referees’ crew who worked the semifinals game between Magnolia and Meralco last Friday, March 27.
The league’s Commissioner’s Office said on Sunday that the four referees will be banned for the rest of the semifinals for missing the crucial 24-second violation by Meralco which happened during the waning seconds of Game 2 with the Bolts up by 5.
With 25 seconds left on the game clock, Bolts import Tony Bishop unleashed a three-pointer which completely missed the rim. Instead of calling for a shot-clock violation, the referees allowed the game to continue amidst the howls of protest by the Hotshots and their supporters.
The Norman Black-mentored squad went on to win the game and level the series at one-game apiece.
A review of the contested play by league officials confirmed that the referees should have called a shot clock violation since the ball did not hit the rim as time expired. Possession should have awarded to Magnolia.
Asked if the table officials were also accountable for the missed call, league officials said that referees are solely responsible for shot clock violations.
The officiating crew has been given full authority to decide on such situations.