A new Celtics Beagle editorialFoul Play?
There's a report from the Associated Press that the NBA Player's Union has had enough of the so-called "zero tolerance" crackdown on demonstrative behavior by players and/or coaches following a foul call by assessing technical fouls. 

This directive was made in response to the out of control behavior of some players and coaches in recent seasons. There was an increase in situations where players or coaches were berating the refs, and tempers flared on several occasions. 

But the new policy stopped short of being considered a rule change, described instead as a more aggressive enforcement of existing rules. 

In looking at the official NBA rules, under "Officials and Their Duties", it reads under Rule 12-Fouls and Penalties: Section V-Conduct: "An official may assess a technical foul, without prior warning, at any time.  A Technical foul(s) may be assessed to any player on the court or anyone seated on the bench for conduct which, in the opinion of the official, is is detrimental to the game...A maximum of two technicals for unsportsmanlike acts may be assessed any player, coach, or trainer.   Any of these offenders may be ejected for for committing only one unsportsmanlike act, and they must be ejected for committing two...A technical foul shall be assessed for unsportsmanlike acts such as: (1) Disrespectfully addressing an official (2) Physically contacting an official (3) Overt actions indicating resentment to a call  (4) Use of profanity...Cursing or blaspheming an official shall not be considered the only cause for for imposing technical fouls.  Running tirades, continuous criticism or griping may be sufficient cause to assess a technical.  Excessive misconduct shall result in expulsion from the game.  

A look at Section III-Elastic Power, states: "The officials shall have the power to make decisions on any point not specifically covered in the rules."

This means that according to the rules, the officials are well within their rights to assess a technical for the behavior described.  Over the last 15-20 years, the officials, for the most part, became much more tolerant of the occasional passionate outburst.  But some players, including Celtics players ranging from Danny Ainge to Antoine Walker, raised bitching to an art form.  We saw people literally whining and yelling at officials, following them around even after play resumed in some cases.  Things got totally out of control when Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban was getting on the court and yelling at officials during a playoff game. 

The zero tolerance was made with the best of intentions, designed to reinforce that there was recourse against the worst offenders.  The problem was if you only called certain people, someone would be bound to complain about preferential treatment, so they went after everybody.

Last season, there were 66 technical fouls assessed through the first 50 NBA games.  So far, one week into the new season, there's been 122 called in the first 51 games.  I'll be the first to admit there's a few people who abuse the officials and deserve a technical, but this is silly.  I almost think the refs are venting a bit after all the abuse of past seasons.

Too bad.  It's their own fault.  Had they simply taken a firmer stand years ago, the antics tolerated until so recently would never have been tolerated to begin with. 

Now, Union leader Billy Hunter is discussing possible legal action for unfair labor practices.  Keep in mind, the tech fouls come with fines. 
Players are fined $1,000 for each of their first five technicals, an amount that increases by $500 for each five after that, capped by a $2,500 penalty for each one starting with the 16th.  A one-game suspension also comes at that point and for every other technical thereafter.  At that rate, Ron Artest and Rasheed Wallace may surpass Mark Cuban for the amount of fines levied by the League. 

Basically, the players want things to ease up a bit, and they have a point.  The message has been received.  Now, let the officials exercise the discretion they have and let the guys vent reasonably.  If someone overdoes it, hit him with a "T".  But an emotional reaction to the moment doesn't merit that kind of reaction.  Nobody wants to go to war over this, they just want some reasonable tolerance.

But the players--and coaches and owners--also need to be reasonable.  The officials have to make the calls and once it's done, it's done. Let's move the game on.  You're getting paid to play the game, not complain about it.  It's one thing to comment "you called this on my guy but not on the other guy."  but after that, let it go.  Some of the histrionics--sadly including some Celtics players--are totally out of proportion to what's going on.  I've always said that the best way to deal with a bad call is to score enough points that it doesn't matter in the end.  Don't let the game depend on the officials.

We've had a preseason and a week of regular season gone by now.  It's time to relax a bit and play the game.

And that's the view from the doghouse.