NBA Considers Off-Site Instant Replay
The NBA’s top brass announced Thursday that the league will investigate making changes to its in-game instant replay system this offseason.
Commissioner David Stern and deputy commissioner Adam Silver told reporters at the NBA’s annual Finals press conference that the league is weighing the merits of adding an off-site replay official in hopes of speeding up a sometimes cumbersome process.
The NBA has steadily added in-game video review for various situations over the last decade. Beginning with reviews for buzzer-beating baskets, the system has expanded to include flagrant fouls, altercations, clock malfunctions, whether a three-point shooter’s foot was on the line, clear-path fouls, late-game goaltending calls, among other scenarios.
The current process involves the three on-court officials stopping play to head to a courtside monitor, where they can review the disputed call or situation. The referees are at the mercy of the video feed available to them and are usually eyeing a fairly small screen and using headphones to hear the audio.
The vast majority of plays that are reviewed under the current system eventually end with the correct call being made, and Stern maintained that the NBA’s fans prefer the current replay system to no replay system, because it reduces the referees’ influence upon the game’s outcome.