Flopping is taking a nosedive. Literally.
The NBA implemented rule changes with regards to flopping at the outset of the 2012-13 season. Potential flopping violations are not assessed in-game; instead, they are evaluated by league officials using video review. Per NBA policy, “the primary factor in determining whether a player committed a flop is whether his physical reaction to contact with another player is inconsistent with what would reasonably be expected given the force or direction of the contact.”
To date, 18 violations have been assessed. As of March 10th, here is the breakdown by month (the season began Oct. 30th):
Number of Violations
Granted, February is the shortest month and contains the break for league’s All-Star Weekend, but it is still plainly evident that flopping calls are on the way down. After marking up 14 violations in the first 60 days of the season, the league has cited just four in the last 72 days.
Either players have figured this thing out, or it is just the case that fewer penalties are being handed out.
First-time violators receive warnings. Only J.J. Barea, Gerald Wallace, Reggie Evans and Kevin Martin have paid the $5000 fine that accompanies second-time offenses. The fines elevate up to $30,000 for a fifth offense, and players may be open to higher fines and/or suspensions for penalties beyond the fifth.
Among the Bucks, only Gustavo Ayon has a mark on his record, but his flop came before Orlando traded him to Milwaukee.
Of course, the flops that truly matter are the ones in the playoffs, and the fines for those violations have not yet been announced. It would be a shame if a player shamelessly took a dive in the final minute of a Game 7 of the NBA Finals.
Whoops. That already happened. A LONG time ago.
Below is a classic clip of Mitch Kupchak in going limp in 1978 after taking a harmless bump from Downtown Freddie Brown.
In the Finals.
In Game 7.
In the final minute.
Thankfully, no foul was called and Brown scored anyway.