Chris Paul

Former NBA ref slams ‘a—–e' CP3 for being ‘image cultivator'

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It's no secret that Chris Paul has a complicated history with NBA referees. And not just with 29-year veteran Scott Foster.

Former NBA ref Bill Spooner spoke with The Athletic's Jason Quick for a feature story on Foster, where he discussed his relationship with Paul and why he's not a fan of the veteran point guard.

“I’m going to tell you, and I know you are recording me, but I get asked all the time: ‘Who are some of the tough guys, some of the bad guys?’ And when I tell them that Chris Paul, in my 32 years in the league, was one of the biggest a------s I ever dealt with, they say, ‘Not Rasheed Wallace … or da-da-da?’ Nope. Nothing like (Paul),” Spooner told Quick. “… And they are like, ‘Oh, he seems like such a nice guy.’ And I say, ‘Yeah, he’s a great image cultivator.'”


The 67-year-old Spooner refereed NBA games for over three decades, including the first 15 seasons of Paul's career before retiring after the 2020-21 season.

It's safe to say Spooner has plenty of experience with Paul, who undoubtedly has developed somewhat of a negative reputation in the eyes of some refs, players, teams and fans over the years. Just ask Dub Nation what they thought of Paul before the 2023-24 season.

But is the 19-year veteran truly the 'biggest a-----e' in the NBA? That's in the eye of the beholder.

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