Thursday, May 29, 2008

Varejao needs a bigger contract


The NBA announced to its teams this week at its annual pre-draft camp that fines will be imposed on players starting next season for clear cases of "flopping," has learned.

The league office has yet to determine exact fine amounts for offending flops and how fines might escalate for repeat offenders, but in-game arena observers and video reviewers will be instructed to report instances of theatrical flopping for potential punishment as part of postgame reports on officiating and other matters. The league's pledge to crack down on flopping was conveyed to team representatives at Tuesday's competition committee meeting in Orlando. NBA executive vice president of basketball operations Stu Jackson confirmed the new policy Wednesday night saying: "What was clearly expressed to the committee is that we would begin imposing fines next season for the most egregious type of flops. When players are taking a dive, for lack of a better term."

Because a precise penalty system has not yet been structured, it is not yet known whether serial floppers will be subject to possible suspensions after a certain number of fines for flopping, as seen with the league's protocol on technical fouls. Players who accrue 16 technicals during the regular season are hit with a one-game suspension when they get to No. 16 -- the limit is seven technicals during the playoffs -- and receive one-game suspensions for every other technical thereafter (No. 18, 20, etc.).

This is a step in the right direction, but I really don't think they need to be fining people. They don't need new rules or new fines, what they need to do is stop calling that shit. That's it. If Tim Duncan is backing down Varejao, Varejao falls on his ass and there no call... Duncan gets a free dunk because Andy is sitting on his backside. Next time down the floor, Varejao might not fall over, because he doesn't want to give up another easy basket (and if he does, Mike Brown will yank him).

See, simple. No new rules, no new fines, just not letting the floppers get away with it. I understand the desire to crack down on this crap (and I'm sympathetic to it, because I hate watching LeBron pick up cheap fouls when guys fall over at the slightest touch) but if they wouldn't let guys get away with it in the first place, they wouldn't need to make up new rules.

Also, will this actually change the ways games are called/played? If the flopper is fined after the fact (and these guys are millionaires) why not flop in a key situation? Sure, he'll get fined, but LeBron may pick up that crucial 5th foul.

(this is why I was against giving Varejao a huge contract. Hes a useful player, but the second they mess with the flopping rules he goes from 'nice rebounder/defender' to 'overpaid rebounder' really quick).


graham said...

Also, players wouldn't flop if refs would call charges when they don't fall. That's why they started in the first place.

Just like Bron would dramatize fouls if the refs wouldn't treat him like a modern-day Shaq.

Sometimes I'm astonished the NBA exists given some of their policies (like changing the ball without talking to those who actually use it).

Also, why give more jurisdiction to NBA refs? They're call are questionable enough as it is.

Ben said...

ya, if you hold your ground like you're supposed to, you don't get the call. Shaq would run over people and Vlade Divac would sell it to get the call.

The charge is so guys don't just power over people, I hate the fact it's called just because someone got in someone else's way (lots of times undercutting).

Erik said...

Nobody is going to stop flopping because players are not going to stop trying to sell calls. It's part of the game. Legislate it all you want. Players aren't going to stop flopping, screaming and acting to try and draw a whistle on the other team. It's gamesmanship.

People think Andy is a pansy because he flops a lot, but he's actually really good at drawing charges, and should get credit as such.

I don't liken Andy to a soccer player who gets touched by someone's finger and crumples to the ground screaming like he's been shot. Andy sets his feet and takes contact in the sternum, which is how you're supposed to take a charge.

Does he sell the flop? Sure. But the charges he takes aren't fake.

if the NBA really wants to crack down on flopping, make the no-charge half-circle under the basket larger. Most guys (including Andy) who try to draw charges set up shop right on the perimeter of the half circle. If you make the circle bigger, you force those guys to commit to standing their ground farther from the hoop, leaving them vulnerable to missing a back-door cut for an easy pass and lay up.

If the charge-drawing strategy backfires enough by allowing easy buckets, no one will do it. Coaches will bench floppers. That's the way to attack this, not by ordering the refs to swallow their whistles on contact plays.