I’ve long been one of the people who thinks that basketball needs some drastic rules changes. And that’s something, since I really don’t like too much tampering with sports. But, right now, basketball is fundamentally wrong.
The players are bigger, stronger, faster, jump higher and more athletic than ever. I mean, when Dr. Naismith invented the game…or when the early forefathers of the NBA…did they actually think they’d have 7-foot guys gazelling around a court like Kevin Garnett?? Or someone as big and quick as Shaq would be around??
Well, when Wilt Chamberlain was around…they did do drastic things…like widen the lane. But that was 40 years ago. Surely there there’s been a big change since then, right??
Well, the 3-point arc was founded. The zone defense was added. Flagrant fouls. Twenty second timeouts. Yet, the court remains the same size. Why? Like I said, the players are so much bigger than they were in the good ol’ days.
I know, the NBA isn’t going to institute any kind of major rules change. Or will they?
Rumor is that the NBA is toying with the idea of eliminating 3-pointers until 5:00 left in the game. They may institute that in their developmental league [the NBDL] this upcoming season. If all goes well, it could be in the NBA in 2005-2006.
Think how drastically the NBA would change.
The NBA hopes it will put more of an effort on players working to get shots closer to the basket…since they are all 2 points for the first 43 minutes of the game. They’re also hoping that players will finish fast breaks with exciting lay-ups or dunks instead of kicking it out to a guys waiting at the arc. It would also stop the ol’ “throw it in to the big guy…wait for the double team…kick it the guy at the arc” play.
Of course, the biggest adjustment would be in the entire way that offenses are built. Every offense has a guy waiting around the arc to provide either an outlet for someone or spacing for the big guys. And the 3-pt line creates spacing for the big guys to do their thing. I also like the fact that it will be available under 5 minutes left in the game. That keeps the real reason the 3-point shot was made anyways….for teams to be able to quickly get back into ball games. Guys like Steve Kerr, Craig Hodges and Jim Paxson would have been the equivalent to a Mariano Rivera or Eric Gagne in baseball. Sit all game…then come in at crunch time.
Whatever makes the game better…I’m all for it.