Saturday, January 16, 1999

Mathis reinstated as NBA official




The Cincinnati Enquirer and The Associated Press

        The NBA has reinstated seven officials, including Mike Mathis of Anderson Township.

        Mathis, who resigned in February 1998 after he pleaded guilty to tax violations, had expected the move but was nonetheless elated Friday. The 21-year NBA veteran said he last officiated a game on Feb.15, 1997.

        “It's been a pretty tough two years, and I'm happy to have my job back,” Mathis said. “I'm going back with the same vigor I had before.”

        Mathis, 56, has kept busy overseeing his Mathis Care foundation, which finds foster homes for needy children. He will continue that work.

        “In a way, it was a blessing,” Mathis said of his hiatus. “It gave me time to get more things done with the foundation at a time we needed it.”

        NBA Commissioner David Stern announced Friday that Mathis, George Toliver, Jess Kersey, Hank Armstrong, Joe Crawford, Joe Forte and Don Vaden will resume their officiating careers.

        “This is a time for healing,” Stern said. “each of the referees has accepted his punishment and expressed genuine remorse for his actions.”

       



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