Former NBA referee Tim Donaghy. d279c63d-1d66-40e9-b9ab-3611aa10096e

Throughout their careers, former NBA referee Tim Donaghy and current NBA referee Scott Foster developed a close enough bond that each man is the godfather of the other’s child.

However, the pair haven’t spoken since Donaghy was arrested in the summer of 2007 for his role in a gambling scandal that revealed he bet on NBA games that he was officiating.

In a new interview with The Athletic, Donaghy expressed “regrets” over his friendship with Foster ending how it did. He also expressed a desire to reconcile with his former friend.

“We were like brothers,” Donaghy said in an interview for the site’s profile on Foster released Monday.

A 2008 investigation revealed nearly 200 phone calls between the pair during Donaghy’s involvement with the gambling scandal, something Foster has written off as simply being a product of how cell phones worked at the time.

“That’s how we communicated in 2007,” Foster said. “Today, when people hear anybody called someone 134 times, it’s like, ‘Wow! That’s weird.’ Because it is weird, I didn’t have text messaging in 2007. I had a Motorola Razr, which, if you wanted to text ‘Yes’ in a text message, was 23 keystrokes or something crazy like that,” He continued.

Foster was cleared in the federal investigation in 2008 and has never faced discipline by the NBA for his friendship with Donaghy.

Donaghy knows it’s unlikely he can ever reconcile with Foster while the latter still works for the NBA, but notes, “I’m hoping at some point when Scott steps away, we can talk. And I can apologize to him. You never know; maybe that friendship can be pieced back together. I’m not sure.”

[The Athletic]