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List of Famous NBA Referees

Updated June 22, 2018 58.4k views23 items
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List of the most notable and famous NBA Referees in the world, with photos when available. Most prominent National Basketball Association Referees worldwide and top National Basketball Association Referees in America can be found on this list ordered by their level of prominence. From reputable NBA Referees to the lesser known NBA Referees in history and today, these are the top National Basketball Association Referees in their field, and should answer the question "who are the most famous NBA Referees in the world?".

This list is made up of a variety of famous NBA refs and officials, including Joey Crawford and Dick Bavetta. Featuring the best NBA referees, retired NBA referees, and more, this list has it all. NBA fans will know the following names of NBA referees, and maybe even the officials' numbers and current roster. 

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  • Marvin "Mendy" Rudolph (March 8, 1926 – July 4, 1979) was an American professional basketball referee in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for 22 years, from 1953 to 1975. Regarded as one of the greatest officials in NBA history, Rudolph officiated 2,112 NBA games (a record held at retirement) and was the first league referee to work 2,000 games. He was also selected to referee eight NBA All-Star Games and made 22 consecutive NBA Finals appearances.Following his career as a referee, he was a color commentator for CBS Sports's coverage of the NBA on CBS for two seasons from 1975 to 1977 and he appeared in a television advertisement for Miller Lite. He was a member of the Naismith...  more
  • Photo: Metaweb (FB) / Fair use

    Richie Powers

    Richard F. "Richie" Powers (October 14, 1930 – July 31, 1998) was a professional basketball referee in the NBA from 1956 to 1979. He worked 25 NBA Finals games, including the triple-overtime Game 5 contest in the 1976 NBA Finals between the Suns and the Celtics, considered "the greatest game ever played" in the NBA, as well as three All-Star Games. Following his career in the NBA, Powers was a sportscaster for WABC-TV....  more
  • Robert J. Delaney (born November 1, 1951) is a former undercover New Jersey state trooper and professional basketball referee in the National Basketball Association (NBA) who officiated from the 1987-88 NBA season up until the 2010-11 NBA season. Beginning the 2006-07 NBA season, Delaney had officiated in 1,182 regular season games, 120 playoff games, and seven NBA Finals games. In addition, Delaney was assigned to the 1998 NBA All-Star Game. He wore the uniform number 26. Delaney is a 1985 graduate of New Jersey City University with a Bachelor of Science degree in criminology. He is a 2006 inductee into NJCU's Athletics Hall of Fame. After finishing college, Delaney joined the New Jersey...  more
  • Steve Javie (born January 17, 1955) is an American retired professional basketball referee who refereed in the National Basketball Association (NBA) from the 1986–87 NBA season to the 2010–11 season. As of the beginning of the 2006–07 NBA season, Javie has officiated 1,264 regular season, 190 playoff, and 18 NBA Finals games. According to Referee magazine, Javie was a highly regarded referee in the NBA, and he was respected within the officiating community for his game management skills. He was also notable during his NBA officiating career for his quickness in assessing technical fouls.Prior to his NBA career, he played and graduated from La Salle College High School. He later played...  more