Rajon Rondo served a one-game suspension last night, because that's what Rajon Rondo does. The incident happened in the third quarter Saturday's win over Atlanta, when referee Rodney Mott whistled Rondo for a charge. Rondo freaked out a bit and approached Mott to argue the call, bumping him ever so slightly.
But Rondo wasn't given the automatic technical that comes with touching a ref. It's not clear Mott even noticed the bump. Still, the NBA announced yesterday afternoon that Rondo would miss the Celtics' game against the Knicks (a game they won anyway). The one-game vacation, without pay, was officially for "making contact with a game official and failure to cooperate with a league investigation." The "failure to cooperate" bit is still kind of a mystery, but at least we have the answer to one question: How did the refs report Rondo to the league when they didn't catch or punish the bump in-game?
Because Hawks GM Danny Ferry caught it. Later yesterday evening, Ferry was fined $15,000 by the NBA for "inappropriate interaction with the game officials following the game." According to ESPN, Ferry approached the refs and handed them a DVD of Rondo bumping Mott. They watched it, passed it along to the league, and discipline chief Stu Jackson had no choice but to suspend Rondo. But the league also came down on Ferry, because complaints and game footage must be sent directly to league offices, not handed to officials cornered in the tunnel. Nobody likes a tattletale.