No details have been released as to what led to Mike Bibby’s removal by Phoenix police from his son’s high school game Friday night, but judging from the former UA guard’s reaction, he did not mind the attention.
Bibby was watching his son Michael Bibby Jr. play for his alma mater, Phoenix Shadow Mountain, in a sectional game at Phoenix Sierra Linda. While the younger Bibby’s team (he is a freshman guard) was beating Sierra Linda, the elder Bibby reportedly was losing his cool over a call by the refs.
The argument got heated enough that the referees requested his removal from the gym. The elder Bibby — who is out of the NBA after 14 years — sits in the stands at all of his son’s games, shouting out directions and encouragement often. Police at the site escorted him out of the gym amid cheers and some faint chants of “ASU, ASU, ASU …”
The Bibbys and Shadow Mountain had the last laugh with a 98-87 victory. The Matadors (24-6) lost 60-42 to Phoenix Sunnyslope on Saturday in the Division II, Section III finals at Scottsdale Coronado High School. No incidents to report from that game.
One member of the Phoenix media — Paul Calvisi of the ABC-TV affiliate there — took the elder Bibby to task after the incident. He writes:
“Our free advice? During games, Mike Bibby should act just like his #10 jersey that hangs on the wall of the Shadow Mountain gymnasium. Not make a sound. Simply watch. Be the strong silent type of parental unit. In other words, when an entire high school gym is abuzz with the presence of a former NBA star, the most important thing that Mike Bibby can do for his son and the rest of a young and impressionable team? Serve as a good example.”
This was not a struggle with the cops. Bibby left without resistance. Let’s learn about what he said to the refs before we pass judgement. What could he have said to a referee to merit removal from a gymnasium by a cop?
Site publisher, writer and editor Javier Morales is a former Arizona Press Club award winner