I chose to look further into the Article in European Sport Management Quarterly. They were testing possible referee bias towards league teams and affiliated people. More Specifically The Dallas Mavericks and Mark Cuban. They analyzed 7 seasons of Mavericks basketball, including 654 games and 77 different referees. Using 3 different z-scores, the most widely accepted statistical measurement, they measured number of games one by the mavericks when a specific referee was working, also accounting for the expected margin of victory. They chose the Mavericks because of owner, Mark Cuban‘s reputation with the NBA and referees especially. He’s actually been quoted in the article saying “Better refs that approach the game objectively miss fewer calls.”
Mark Cuban Antics http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mgWGRnUEcN4
Their results showed no negative effects on the performance of the Dallas Mavericks by referees in that 7 year span. There was only 1 case where a referee had a “significantly adverse effect” on the Mavericks’ performance in analysis of the 80 playoff games the teams played. The researchers also list their limitations in the study. They did not analyze any games prior to Mark Cuban’s reign as owner which could have provided a control group. They also admit, in the title even, that their study is just a “starting point” for future studies.
Comparing to the previous article about referee biases, this article takes a completely different stance. The previous, which broke down referee calls in certain situations, claims that there were certain biases. The 2 studies differ in their methods and theories in general. This article was testing if there were negative biases towards a team with an overbearing owner. The previous tested, not an individual team, but all teams in a certain situation (Losing game, losing series, or home team).
The cracked article “3 reasons why people think the NBA is as rigged as wrestling” is looking at the NBA as a whole. These studies assess the referees that work for the NBA. While they don’t necessarily make the same claim, the cracked article relates to the academic articles greatly. Since the referees work for the NBA that would be how Commissioner Stern affects the outcomes of games and seasons.