Fan Mail from ex-NBA Referee Tim Donaghy (Probably)


You remember ex NBA referee Tim Donaghy, correct? He’s been doing some fantastic work on Deadspin. I suggest you check it out. He also writes for The Sports Connection

In case you don’t recall the name, here’s a brief dossier from Wikipedia. (And remember it’s Wikipedia, so please take this not with a grain, but instead an entire truckload of salt):

“During his career in the NBA, Donaghy officiated in 772 regular season games and 20 playoff games. Donaghy resigned from the league on July 9, 2007 before reports of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for allegations that he bet on games that he officiated during his last two seasons and that he made calls affecting the point spread in those games.

On August 15, 2007, Donaghy pleaded guilty to two federal charges related to the investigation. However, he could face more charges at the state level if it is determined that he deliberately miscalled individual games. Donaghy was sentenced to 15 months in federal prison on July 29, 2008. He served 11 months in a federal prison camp in Pensacola, Florida to spend the remainder of his sentence in a halfway house, but was sent back to jail in August for violating his release terms. He was released on November 4, 2009 after serving out his sentence.”

Well, Mr. Donaghy (or perhaps someone impersonating him) reached out to me last night, with the following email

—–Original Message—–
From: Tim Donaghy
To: paulb05 Sent: Tue, Jun 14, 2011 6:31 pm
Subject: hey

You called me a scumbag…..LOL……nice article….

Tim Donaghy


Short and to the point. In Mr. Donaghy’s (or the person who created a fake email account in his name, and also took the time to impersonate him by reading and responding to a TSB article from 2007) best interests, I redacted the email address.

He’s right though. I’ve called numerous public figures similar pejoratives, and actually much worse things than a “scumbag.” If all of them emailed me, hotmail’s server would undoubtedly crash.

I responded by inviting Mr. Donaghy to do an email interview for this site. Please accept!

We’d love to have you, and I think we all need to hear your side of the story.

Those who get vilified in our society often have the most compelling stories to share, because we never to get to hear their perspective. The media silences them and it’s not always fair. I saw a play a few years ago that conveyed the biography of Benedict Arnold.

It showed us how the Colonial Army screwed him out of money on numerous occasions, and repeatedly promised him promotions within the military, only to later deny him those promotions. (I fact checked this stage production by the way, and I found no discrepancies- I’m a huge Revolutionary War dork.) I still don’t think BA should have sold us out to the Redcoats, but he did get a couple bum deals and he did have a trophy wife who was half his age to take care of, so I get why he went treasonous. I don’t condone it, but I understand.

Situations of this nature are very interesting, and make for lively discussion.

Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports You can follow him on Twitter

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