JJ Barea and Donald Sloan hit with first NBA flopping warning
J.J. Barea was called out on a defensive play against guard Jimmer Fredette in the fourth quarter of Friday’s loss to the Sacramento Kings. The 28-year-old J.J. Barea dramatically threw up his arms in the air as he fell back after contact, fooling the referees into calling a foul upon Jimmer Fredette.
Prior to the Minnesota Timberwolves’ game against the Brooklyn Nets on Monday, J.J. Barea stated that the league hadn’t contacted him yet regarding the alleged flop. However, J.J. Barea assumed that the he might be flagged for the flopping penalty for one of the two charging fouls he drew on Friday’s game.
Donald Sloan too got his legs entangled with Chicago Bulls center Nazr Mohammed on a defensive play in the open court and fell a few feet from contact spot during the fourth quarter of a game that the Cleveland Cavaliers lost 115-86 Friday night.
The referees had a hard time last season telling apart real foul from the players’ theatrically orchestrated injuries or being hit with elbows to the face and even forcibly being tripped on court.
So the NBA launched a new anti-flopping policy this season that requires the video reviewing of questionable defensive plays laced with flopping intentions, at the league offices. The game referees have been altogether removed from the equation.
The league identifies “any physical act that appears to have been intended to cause the referees to call a foul on another player” as a flop that is punishable by fines with reputations of the act leading to suspension.
According to the NBA’s new anti-flopping policy, a first time offense calls for a warning with the punishment being incremented to $5,000 fine on second-time offense, followed by $10,000 fine for third, $15,000 for fourth and a fifth-time offense landing a $30,000 fine. Additional flops are liable to a suspension by the league.
While the anti-flopping policy seemingly promises to put an end to the players’ deceptive on-court theatrics, the NBA Players Association has filed a legal complaint against the league’s new rule, claiming that the fines are too steep.
Minnesota Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman too isn’t a big fan of the NBA’s flopping policy and believes the league office should have no say in the game calls.
“I just think it seems like our officials are supposed to be the best in the world, and they're very good officials,” said Rick Adelman, “and they should be able to tell if somebody gets hit or he's faking it."
"I've said it before, I think it's something that they can certainly look at,” continued Rick Adelman, “but I don't know how anybody, you know, a thousand miles away on TV can tell if somebody gets hit or not hit...if somebody does that to you, you're going to flinch,"
Rick Adelman also expressed concern that 6-foot J.J. Barea was targeted due to his “reputation” of sometimes being frustrating to get along with.
“He got hit. The play that they're talking about, the guy hit him in the face,” said Rick Adelman, “and he got called for a foul. I don't understand how he can get a warning foul."