The flop epidemic may be over. Flopping — the art of exaggerated reactions designed to lure undeserved foul calls against an opponent — is not extinct, but the league’s crackdown on it seems to have worked. After an average of 30 flops being flagged by the league office with either a warning or a fine in the last three regular seasons, there’s been only eight so far this season. And in February, there were none.
In October and November alone, I identified 105 hacks — more than in the entire 2012-13 regular season. While I ultimately found 164 intentional fouls during the 2014-15 regular season, the vast majority of those came after DeAndre Jordan was hacked 13 times by the San Antonio Spurs on the first day after the All-Star break. The league didn’t hit triple-digit intentional fouls last season until March 27.
Ferris, who loved mathematics, ended up dividing the number of seconds in a 48-minute game (2,880) by the average number of shots taken in a game (120) to get to the 24-second time limit per possession. While he and Biasone often share in the credit for the shot clock, it was Ferris who was singled out during a team banquet at the time. “I found this clip, and the Nats had a team banquet in 1954 where their business manager Bob Sexton credited Leo with pushing the [shot-clock] rule,” Kirst said. “It was in the papers, too. He was integral, there’s no question about that.” The first NBA game to use the 24-second shot clock was Oct. 30, 1954, when the Rochester Royals beat the Boston Celtics 98-95.
While the “hack-a-player” strategy employed by some NBA coaches might not be pretty to watch, it’s likely not going away, commissioner Adam Silver said Tuesday. “I’m not going to say we’re never going to change it, but we’ll look at it closely,” Silver said during an appearance on ESPN Radio’s Mike & Mike. “We had a long discussion about with the competition committee this summer and the decision was to leave it and let’s continue to track it.