Tuck: NBA Holds Ground On Flopping
Barring the NBAPA stopping the ruling from going into action, it seems like players and coaches alike almost universally support the league’s attempt to clean up the game. The Players Association’s biggest beef is obviously protecting the player wallets from an arbitrary ruling that would come from the commissioners office.
Players will get a warning the first time, then be fined $5,000 for a second violation. The fines increase to $10,000 for a third offense, $15,000 for a fourth and $30,000 for the fifth. Six or more could lead to a suspension. That hasn’t been ironed out completely yet.
“Flops have no place in our game; they either fool referees into calling undeserved fouls or fool fans into thinking the referees missed a foul call,” vice president of basketball operations Stu Jackson said in a statement. “Accordingly, both the Board of Governors and the competition committee felt strongly that any player who the league determines, following video review, to have committed a flop should, after a warning, be given an automatic penalty.”
Will it be perfect? Of course not. There will likely be debate and commentary during games on what was or wasn’t and then player reaction upon being punished, and subsequent debate on whether it was justified or not.
It is a positive step though. Players in a position of weakness on the floor often just used the flop as a final “out” play. If it worked, great. You stopped the offensive player and you drew a foul on them. If it didn’t, then it was just a final chance to stop the play. Now, players will think twice.
There will be less attempting to fool referees on the perimeter. Players will try harder to stand their ground, and keep their feet. In the paint, more shots will be contested and more blocks will result. It should become more physical inside, and fans will appreciate that. No cheapies. Players may still try to draw charges, but there will probably be less sliding in underneath offensive players who are ready to take to the air.
The result, we hope as basketball fans, will be a cleaner game. Less whistles, and less bodies on the ground. And more scoring. And less foul trouble for big guys, at least the good ones.
A player like Dwight Howard should benefit the most. He probably has had more “bad” whistles against him than any other player in the league since Shaq played at a high level.
I don’t think it will completely change the game, but I respect the NBA for attempting to make it more viewer friendly.