Should the NBA consider implementing some of FIBA’s rules, such as live ball on the rim, less timeouts and 10 minute quarters to make the game more exciting?
AC: There is no doubt that Olympic contests are more exciting than NBA regular season games. However, some of that excitement has to be attributed to the sense of magnitude that comes from athletes representing their own country on such a big stage rather than just an NBA franchise. That being said, the games are undoubtedly also exciting because of their fast paced nature.
While I don’t believe the NBA’s goaltending and basket interference rules ought to be changed, a reduction of timeouts would do well to eliminate the stop-and-start nature that bogs down NBA games. The only problem is, a reduction of timeouts or shorter quarters would mean less time for advertisers and thus, a lesser bottom line for the league as a whole, which is why I do not believe any of the aforementioned rules will be adopted by the NBA.
JT: The live ball on the rim rule is probably the most obvious rule to change for me, personally. The D-League recently made that change a couple of years ago and considering how the league is used as a breeding ground for future experimentation in the NBA, maybe we’ll see that change come in the near future. As far as other changes like timeouts and quarters go, I think Adam detailed why it’s hard to see the league cut down on timeouts and shorter quarters, considering the amount of advertising and off the court business involved. That’s not to say it will never happen down the road, but I just don’t see those things changing anytime soon.
AM: I’m unsure as to how many FIBA rules there are that wouldn’t automatically improve the NBA as a spectacle if they were to be applied stateside. As Jordan and Adam alluded to, the problem lies in the fact that decisions in the league aren’t necessarily made to make their product better overall, but instead to make it more valuable. The fact that I’m using the word product here says it all.
I do think less timeouts is not only more beneficial to the flow of the game, but also to the creativity that players get to display. FIBA play involves much more reactionary or natural decision-making, and in some ways, although execution doesn’t match up to the NBA as a by-product, it makes a refreshing change from the way NBA coaches often micromanage a game.
The best we could probably hope for is a middle ground on some rule tweaks, but I’m not so sure we’ll ever see any changes implemented that reduce the length of the game or the number of stoppages, as both of those eat into advertizing dollars.
TW: I don’t really have a strong opinion on this either way, but I’d definitely be open to seeing the NBA trial an adaptation of FIBA rules in pre-season games and/or the D-League like they have previously with 10-minute quarters and live ball on the rim.
Certainly a shorter game makes the NBA product much more appealing to casual fans and those who don’t watch basketball at all, but at the same time, as has been mentioned, it ultimately means a reduction in a key revenue source for the league, making the prospect of changes unlikely.
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