New NBA flopping rule is working
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
The NBA issued seven flopping violations in the first month of the 2012-13 season and seven in the second month. There were just three flopping violations in the third month of the season, and there have been zero flopping violations in February.
“We feel that the new flopping rule is working well,” NBA executive vice president of basketball operations Stu Jackson told USA TODAY Sports.
The anti-flopping rule, implemented at the start of the season, is designed to trim player embellishments that trick or fool a referee into a calling a foul that didn’t happen.
Jackson said the rule works for three primary reasons.
1) Simply, there’s a rule forbidding it. “It had an effect and served noticed to the players and the teams that this is something we’re going to be looking at very closely,” Jackson said.
2) Players have been warned and fined. “It put everyone on notice again that we were actually looking at these flops and making some decisions,” Jackson said.
3) No one wants to lead the league in flops. “It’s the scarlet letter syndrome. Most players don’t want to be known or called out for having flopped,” Jackson said.
Thirteen players have been caught flopping 17 times. Four players have been busted twice, resulting in a $5,000 fine for each: Minnesota’s J.J. Barea, Brooklyn’s Reggie Evans and Gerald Wallace and Oklahoma City’s Kevin Martin. The next flop for any of those players will result in a $10,000 fine.
“We have definitely noticed less (flopping),” Washington Wizards forward Chris Singleton said. “People don’t want that fine. It’s the money.”
Just because a flop violation hasn’t been issued since Jan. 24, it doesn’t mean the league has decreased its vigilance. Video loggers watch every NBA and potential flops are sent to appropriate staffers. Potential violations are whittled further and delivered to Jackson where “ultimately, I, along with some of the other basketball people on my staff, make a decision after that as to whether or not we would warn a player,” he said.
Jackson admits the flops that have been singled out by the league are the more egregious ones.
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