NBA referees are more often than not very good at their jobs, but for whatever reason, when it comes to calling traveling violations, officials often appear to swallow their whistles.
Already this season, we have seen many egregious examples. There was the ridiculous six-step violation that D.J. Augustin got away with; Carmelo Anthony took six or seven baby steps setting up for a 3-point shot; and finally, Kemba Walker basically just started jogging up the court with the ball in his hand without it being called.
The latest NBA player to get away with an obvious traveling violation is Mavs legend, Dirk Nowitzki, who basically starting doing defensive slides with the ball before turning and facing James Harden.
The worst part is not that Dirk got away with a travel, it’s that the official was standing right there watching him do it. NBA games move quickly, and sometimes refs can miss a big man moving his pivot foot, or a player getting a little more than two steps while collecting the ball on the fast break, but there is no possible excuse to miss such an obvious call when the official is looking right at it. To make matters worse, it was a close game late in the fourth quarter when this happened.