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Foul Play: NBA Fines Ref Over Bad Call

WASHINGTON -- The NBA fined referee Joe Borgia for calling a foul on Washington's Calbert Cheaney instead of teammate Chris Webber, thus keeping Webber in a game last week against Vancouver.

Brian McIntyre, a league spokesman, told The Washington Post that Borgia was fined and reprimanded for the call in the Jan. 16 game, which Washington won 112-110.

The newspaper said in its Friday editions that Borgia told Cheaney that he was assessed the foul instead of Webber so that Webber, who already had five fouls, could stay in the game.

The foul was called with Vancouver holding a 100-90 lead with 6:01 left. Webber went on to score seven of the last 13 points as Washington came back to win it.

"Apparently, Joe Borgia felt both Chris Webber and Calbert Cheaney commited a foul on that play, with Cheaney committing his foul earlier," McIntyre said. "And if a referee sees two players commit a foul, he has the discretion to call the earlier foul. Having said that, his comments reflect something that he is not supposed to do."

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