Emotions have been running high during the current NBA Playoff series between the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets. And not just on the court.

Before pivotal Game 5 on Wednesday night when the Warriors took a 3-2 series lead while also losing Kevin Durant to a scary-looking (but ultimately not as scary as it could have been) injury, there was some chippiness happening on Twitter between the teams’ media members.

It seemed to start when Bay Area News Group sports columnist Dieter Kurtenbach tweeted a fairly benign and common joke that if the NBA wants to ensure good ratings for playoffs ahead, they’ll make sure the Warriors beat the Rockets.


Jokes about the NBA fixing the outcome of games to ensure good ratings are standard operation procedure (and there’s at least some merit to the claim). Besides, it’s just the kind of red meat troll tweet you hand out to the fans of the team you cover when you want to provide a little color in your feed.

Houston Rockets TV and radio play-by-play voice Craig Ackerman did not see it that way. Or, he saw the tweet as the latest in a long line of perceived slights on behalf of the NBA’s current dynasty towards the rest of the league.

Ackerman’s jab did not go unnoticed and fellow members of that Bay Area “collective” responded.

Ackerman’s response kinda undercuts his argument here. The initial punch was over the perception that Bay Area media members are biased and feel as though they’re a part of the Warriors franchise. When called out, Ackerman’s defense is to say that he is allowed to call them out because…he is biased and feels as though he is a part of the Rockets franchise. So…what’s the problem then?

After that exchange, it looks like cooler heads prevailed and everyone went their merry way to prepare for the impending game. The Warriors did win (with or without NBA collusion) and remain in the driver’s seat to return to their fifth-consecutive NBA Finals (Durant-willing). They’ll try to put away the Rockets in Game 6 on Friday. Expect it to be a hard-fought battle by both sides, and that includes the people who are paid to report on it.

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to sean@thecomeback.com.