Tony Brown is an NBA referee who, according to the NBA, “has officiated 1,109 regular-season games and 35 playoff games – including his first Finals appearance in 2020 – in his 19 seasons as an NBA official”. That’s talent.
Brown knows what he’s doing as a professional in the league who’s seemingly well-respected by NBA circles.
As the NBA season winds down and the playoff approaches, the NBA referee community will be without Brown, though, as he “will not officiate the rest of the regular season nor during the 2021 NBA Playoffs after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer last month” according to the NBA in a statement.
Brown “has been undergoing treatment since learning of the diagnosis” according to the NBA.
“Tony is a beloved member of the NBA family, and in particular, our officiating family,” Monty McCutchen, Referee Development and Training NBA senior vice president, said per the NBA. “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.”
“Tony and his entire family wish to express their gratitude for the well-wishes, prayers, support and love which they have received over recent days,” the NBA said in its statement.
Those well-wishes, prayers, support, and love for the popular referee have come from all over.
- “Prayers for our NBA family member Tony Brown,” Richard Jefferson tweeted.
- “My family and I thoughts and prayers are with Tony Brown and his family as they go through this courageous battle! #NBAfamily#Nba,” Dwyane Wade tweeted.
- “Pancreatic Cancer took my father 9 years ago,” @shweeties182 said in a retweet of James’ tweet. “It remains the 4th deadliest cancer because it is very hard to find early. Just 6% of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer are alive more than 5 years later. I’m hoping Tony Brown is one of the 6%”.
- “Prayers up to Tony Brown,” Marc J. Spears said in a tweet.
- “NBA fans, let us all pray for the well-being of Tony Brown, and for his family as well…,” ClutchPoints NBA said in a tweet.
- “Prayers…for @OfficialNBARefs Tony Brown who has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer,” Mark Jones tweeted. “Tony is…a 19 year vet. He’s one of the best.I’ve always enjoyed his energy and his million watt smile. Let’s declare…and claim healing and restoration over Tony today”.
“If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, we’re here to help,” the Pancreatic Cancer Network urges. “We provide more resources and speak with more pancreatic cancer patients and caregivers than any other organization in the world. No one should have to face pancreatic cancer alone.”
For more information on detecting pancreatic cancer for you or a loved one, you can find that here at the American Cancer Society.
Charlie Lapastora is a sports/news multimedia journalist who’s reported, written, produced, anchored, shot video/edited on different NBC, ABC, and FOX shows in multiple TV markets, along with digital & new media companies. Charlie has traveled the country telling national sports, news, feature, and original stories on a cable news network, airing on top 10 TV markets, satellite radio, and digital platforms. He is passionate about his faith, family—being a husband to whom he calls the G.O.A.T. of women—about reppin’ his home state of Michigan and Detroit teams (yes, including the Lions), good coffee, and loves how sports brings people together. He’s traveled the world leading and coaching sports camps and has also worked at the Detroit Pistons and LA Clippers’ NBA teams.
At The Buzzer, or ATB is the place for those who love sports, life, family, community, and so much more. We are far from the run-of-the-mill 24/7 sports news websites. We not only bring you what’s happening in the world of sports in terms of trades and breaking news, but we also bring you the news that goes on behind the scenes, like big life moments, and so much more. So take a minute and read one of our articles, we promise you won't regret it.