NBA stars such as James Harden and Trae Young have generated criticism from analysts and fans for unusual shooting motions they utilize in attempts to draw fouls from defenders.
They may soon have to break that habit.
ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports the NBA’s Competition Committee met Monday to discuss a rule change that would restrict unnatural motions such as leaning sideways into opponents while shooting to create contact. Wojnarowski adds general managers will hear from the league and the Competition Committee next week about examples of such plays that could be prohibited starting with the 2021-22 season.
It’s unclear if these controversial maneuvers will result in offensive fouls or if they will simply go ignored by referees and not result in the shooter earning a trip to the free throw line.
These days, it’s rare for a league to implement a rule that negatively affects offensive statistics. For example, the NFL routinely assists quarterbacks and passing attacks via rules regarding instances such as pass interference or roughing the passer. However, Wojnarowski noted the NBA and Competition Committee believe the current rules for shooters “are contributing to a game that’s slanting too much of an advantage toward the offense.” That looks likely to change by the start of Las Vegas Summer League games in August.