NBA Commissioner Adam Silver delivers rule changes

June 2, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; NBA commissioner Adam Silver speaks to media before the Golden State Warriors play against the Cleveland Cavaliers in game one of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
June 2, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; NBA commissioner Adam Silver speaks to media before the Golden State Warriors play against the Cleveland Cavaliers in game one of the NBA Finals at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports /

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver met with the press to deliver the results of the Board of Governors meeting including rule changes for the  2016-17 season.

Rule Changes

Hack-A-Shaq Rule:

Adam Silver said the hack-a policy hurts the game adding an additional 15 minutes to the game which isn’t positive for network partners or fans. Though the league won’t abolish the rule completely they have made a significant change as per

Previously, the penalty for such away-from-the-ball fouls increased during the final two minutes of the fourth quarter and overtime. Now that stiffer penalty — one free throw, plus possession of the ball — will be imposed during the last two minutes of each quarter.

Tim McMahon of ESPN noted Mark Cuban was against the change

Mark Cuban told ESPN he voted against new deliberate foul rules. “Rewarding incompetence is never a good business strategy.”
— Tim MacMahon, ESPN

Of course Cuban is right, as the reality is a player earning $20M a year getting rewarded for their  fundamental incompetence is ridiculous.  Basically the League is not stopping this practice all together, but by applying it to each quarter will curtail the practice overall in games.

.@mcuban says statistics say people DONT change the channel during hack-a-player. Don't know where my minds at with this rule…

— Coach Mac (@BballCoachMac) May 5, 2015

Two other rule changes also revolve around intentional fouling:

  1. Any player who jumps on a player back as a deliberate foul will be assessed a flagrant foul.
  2. The second rule change applies to inbound passes.  Now any intentional foul occurring prior to an inbound play will be treated the same way as it previously was in the last 2 minutes of a quarter.

NBA Commissioner, Adam Silver, addresses the rule changes that pertain to "Hack a Shaq"

— NBA TV (@NBATV) July 13, 2016

The obvious effect of these rule changes will be players like DeAndre Jordan, Dwight Howard and Andre Drummond being able to stay on the floor to end quarters and games. As much as the deliberate fouling of these poor free throw shooters isn’t aesthetically pleasing I’m with Cuban on this. It’s inane the NBA is having to change long standing rules to accommodate the inadequacy of players who earn millions of dollars.

All-Star Game

Silver also said the League is still unsatisfied with the response of Charlotte regarding Rule 2 which presents issues of inclusiveness as the state outlawed access of transgender individuals to utilize either bathroom in public venues.  As per

“Silver repeatedly has cited “diversity and inclusion” as core principles of the NBA, values make staging the 2017 All-Star Game and all the festivities surrounding it “problematic.” Attempts to work behind the scenes with politicians and business leaders in North Carolina have not been fruitful and a recent short session of the state legislature only produced only minor revisions in language, insufficient to satisfy the NBA.”

Silver said the League ideally wants this situation resolved prior to the end of Summer League given the time table of selecting an alternative venue and the financial considerations it presents for the city who gets the weekend can generate up to $100 million in revenue.

Super Teams

Silver took exception regarding super teams being good for the league:

I don’t think it’s good for the league, just to be really clear,” he said. “I will say, whoever is the ‘prohibitive favorite,’ try telling that to the 430 other players who aren’t on those two teams.”-Silver

This is an issue the League didn’t think long enough about during the last lock-out and negotiating the new CBA agreement.

More from Space City Scoop

From my perspective they recognized too late that an influx of additional $20M to the salary cap in 2 consecutive seasons was only going to help teams with strong teams get stronger. It did nothing to help small market teams or create the parity the Commissioner has always said is an Association desire.

Further, it literally only helps players who luck out into being in contract years during this 2-year time frame. For players who are already locked in it actually hurts them because by the time they are ready to renegotiate the teams salary will already be fully absorbed. This means small markets will be forced to either go into the luxury or let their top players walk to teams willing to pay that luxury tax.  It wasn’t well thought out and I think it’s going to hurt the League in the long run.

SCS will update as free agency news develops.

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