'Environment of hostility' festering between NBA players, refs? by Roscoe Nance The referees' union is crying foul about the way some NBA coaches and players treat its members. The union cites 27 incidents over the past two seasons that resulted in coaches and players being suspended or fined for their behavior toward referees. "Our greatest fear is that we're a step away from a referee being physically assaulted," Lamell McMorris, executive director of the National Basketball Referees Association, says. "That's where we are. That's the environment that's being created."