Veteran NBA ref to miss remainder of season after pancreatic cancer diagnosis

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Veteran NBA referee Tony Brown has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and will miss the remainder of the 2020-21 season, the league said in a new release.

Brown is undergoing treatment, the NBA said.

“Tony is a beloved member of the NBA family, and in particular, our officiating family,” NBA senior vice president of referee development and training Monty McCutchen said in a statement. “In addition to exemplifying what it means to be a world class referee on the court, Tony also touches so many lives off the court. The NBA officiating family and the entire NBA family stand behind Tony with thoughts and prayers as he embarks upon this courageous battle.”

Washington Wizards head coach Scott Brooks argues a call with referee Tony Brown (6) during a game last month in Washington.
Washington Wizards head coach Scott Brooks argues a call with referee Tony Brown (6) during a game last month in Washington.

Brown, who attended high school in Tallahassee, Florida and is a 1989 graduate of Clark Atlanta University, is in his 19th NBA season. He has officiated 1,109 regular-season games and 35 playoff games including his first Finals appearance in Game 4 between the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat last season. He also refereed the 2018 All-Star Game in Los Angeles and 2021 All-Star Game in Atlanta.

Before joining the NBA’s officiating staff, he was a referee in the G League, WNBA and CBA.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Veteran NBA ref to miss rest of season after pancreatic cancer diagnosis