It's a common notion that the best players get away with calls. Refs have allowed them to showcase their greatness, and sometimes, they can't help but get absorbed in the situation. Michael Jordan got away with the push-off. James Harden's stepback journeys weren't called traveling violations either. Teammates of these superstars benefit from them, too, as revealed by ex-Golden State Warrior Andrew Bogut.
Andrew Bogut on getting away with fouls
Andrew Bogut played for the Golden State Warriors for five seasons and won a title with them in 2015. As a starting center of a team full of shooters and wing players, one of the main tasks of the Australian was to make sure to set the timely screens to free their scorers. The now-retired center was amazed at how many illegal screens he got away with just because of his superstar teammates.
In a Ryen Rusillio podcast episode, Bogut shared how the game officials wouldn't let great play sequences get ruined by calling infractions.
"I could literally clothesline someone off the next pindown, I know Klay just hit 3 in a row, the crowd's on their feet as he's getting his 4th and I could punch somebody in the face on a screen, knock em out and they wouldn't call it. Klay would get his 4th 3, and even the refs would go 'Wow' (and ignore it), it was crazy."
A quick search on Youtube yields some illegal screens the 14-year veteran did while playing for the GSW.
Why it's not called on different teams
The Australian added that the refs called those illegal screens fouls when he was traded to the Dallas Mavericks. So is there some bias officiating with how the Warriors games were called?
We can't know for sure, and there's also a lot of evidence where other teams get away with violations or fouls. It's interesting to hear straight from Bogut himself that these things happened during his time in Golden State. It's another fodder for the rumor mill that the Warriors got a lot of help during their championship runs.
Andrew Bogut did his job as a Warrior: got rebounds, provided intimidation in the paint, and set solid, borderline illegal screens. He was a pivotal piece for Golden State back then. Without him, it would have been a different story on how Steph Curry and Klay Thompson could have freed themselves from their defenders.