MESA, Ariz. (AP) -Darell Garretson, the longtime NBA referee who also directed the league's officiating staff, has died. He was 76.
The National Basketball Referees Association said Wednesday that Garretson died Monday at his Mesa home. The union said Garretson's health had been in decline following surgery and various illnesses.
``We are saddened by the passing of Darell Garretson,'' NBA commissioner David Stern said. ``Darell was a man of extraordinary character, who touched many lives during his 31-year tenure as an NBA official and supervisor of officials.
``On behalf of the entire NBA family, I extend my deepest sympathy to his wife, Jeannie, and two sons, Ron and Rick.''
Garretson began his career as an NBA referee in 1967. In 1981, he became the NBA Chief of Officiating Staff, while remaining an active referee. He held both jobs for 13 seasons and retired from the supervisor position in 1998.
``Our grief at losing Darell Garretson is not just about the loss of an icon, a refereeing legend, although he certainly is both of those things,'' NBRA spokesman Lamell McMorris said. ``It is much more personal. Darell discovered and developed so many of our current referees. ... He took them and he coached them, tirelessly, and he made them some of the most elite referees in the world. And they love him for it.''
Ron Garretson is a current NBA referee.

Top NBA Public Bets

NBA Top Stories

Thumbnail Knicks trade for Derrick Rose The Chicago Bulls and New York Knicks made a big trade on Wednesday when the Knicks acquired Derrick Rose in a...
Thumbnail 2017 NBA Finals Odds With the NBA Finals now complete, here is a look ahead to which teams will be favored to contend for next year’s championship.
Thumbnail NBA Finals Game 7 Pick It’s all come down to one game. Who will prevail in Game 7 of the NBA Finalsas the Golden State Warriorshost the Cleveland Cavaliersat 8PM ET?
Thumbnail NBA Finals Game 7 Total Pick Will Game 7 of the NBA Finalsbe another high-scoring affair, or will it be a grind out between the Golden State Warriorsand Cleveland...
Thumbnail NBA Finals Game 6 Pick Can the Golden State Warriors get back on track in Game 6 of the NBA Finals or will the Cleveland Cavaliers create...
More inNBA Articles  

NBA Team Pages