One man's honest opinion about sports in the Motor City, and beyond.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Where Garbage Happens

The NBA needs to put a stop to the “pump-fake-throw-yourself-into-the-defender” move. This play drives me nuts and cheapens the game.
What happens is that the man with the ball pump-fakes – getting the defender to jump or move towards him – then the offensive player forces contact by moving into the defender. He makes a shooting like action and throws the ball towards the hoop in the process – this gives the illusion of a shooting foul . The ref blows the whistle and the shooter heads to the free throw line.
Total bunk.
The most egregious case I’ve seen was Kyle Korver – for the Jazz – sometime last week. The defender actually played his pump fake perfect. He jumped towards Korver’s right side. The defender wouldn’t have touched him except Korver decided to just lean to his right – forcing the contact. The whistle blew and Korver went to the line (I think for 3 free throws).
When an offensive player forces contact in this situation there should be no foul called. So many times you see a defender make a good play to get their hand in the shooter’s face, but they get called for a foul.
Emperor Stern needs to do something about it.
It is horrible for the game. Nobody is paying 60 bucks to watch a free throw contest. Not a single person. So let the game flow a bit. Every time I watch or go to an NHL game I’m always impressed on how well the game flows. There aren’t many stoppages and it is fantastic. The NBA stops all the time and it’s stupid.
So, enough is enough. Over the summer the NBA needs to really take a look at this play and figure out what they can do to stop it. The refs are capable of making that call – at least they should be.
One theory - for why this is always called a foul - is that the NBA is trying to force the defender not to be aggressive – in some kind of effort to free up shooters and create more offense.
But, for this particular play, it doesn’t work that way. There isn’t more quality offense, just more points. Like I said, nobody wants to watch people shoot free throws.
Can you imagine a free throw competition between Stockton and Billups during all-star weekend?
I’d rather watch the WNBA dunk contest.
I rest my case.
Random Thoughts:
a) Did anyone else notice that the crowd at the NFL draft booed the shit out of Matt Stafford. The announcers didn’t say a word about it – not that I heard. The crowd was actually chanting “overrated” at one point. Why did the announcers avoid the subject? I mean, c’mon, you could hear it clear as day.
b) I don’t like that Stafford is listed at 6 foot 2. That’s not a very tall quarterback. According to – the average quarterback is 6 foot 3. I don’t know, that isn’t much to go on, but I didn’t realize the guy was short. Just figured the first pick overall – if it was a QB – was gonna be more like 6-foot-4.


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