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There are times in a game when officials should get together as a crew. There are times when officials shouldn’t get together.

During warmups is one of the times officials should avoid getting together, unless absolutely necessary. Outside of the captains/coaches meeting, the warmup period is a time for each official to focus on getting ready to officiate the upcoming game.

That’s the time to evaluate the teams, ensure proper equipment is worn, correct equipment or court problems and mentally visualize the upcoming events.

Officials should get together as a crew after the first timeout or end of the first quarter if the crew isn’t on the same page and needs to discuss an issue. If the game is off to a good start as the crew planned, assume your timeout positions as normal.

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At the halftime break, the referee can handle addressing the scorer’s table while the umpire(s) wait at the center circle and then join the referee as the crew walks to the locker room.

Warmups for the second half are another time each member should individually be preparing much like the pregame warmup period.

Timeouts near the end of a close game should always require an immediate crew get-together. One official should quickly ensure the needed information (timeouts remaining, team fouls correct as displayed, etc.) from the scorer’s table prior to joining the crew. Communicate necessary information needed in terms of timeouts left, the team foul situation, etc. Talk about the possible strategy situations that may occur based on the game score/situation. If one team is down five points with less than 30 seconds left, it likely will attempt to foul to stop the clock and get the ball back as quickly as possible. Conversely, if one team is up three with two seconds left, it may choose to foul and put its opponent on the free-throw line, making it harder for the opponent to score three points.

In situations such as an unusual ruling, where the crew has to meet without a timeout or quarter break, send the players to their benches while the crew communicates. That measure allows the crew to address the matter at hand without having to observe the players.

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