2020 Rule changes: first change


Art 5/19/44 Players: Injury/Substitutions/Special Situations (Minor): clarifying when a player who receive an assistance is treated as an injured player. If the game is stopped for:

  • an injured player cannot resume immediately=doesn’t recover within 15″.
  • a player receives assistance from a team member

This is to eliminate interruptions in the game and manage the delay in the game resumption more consistently. Assistance can be on a shoe, a contact lens, loss of a taping, a problem with the game uniform, etc…

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Seek and ye shall find!


34blue receives out of the arc, 21white is trailing but clearly in late. While 34blue shoots, the defensive player jumps uncoordinated in an attempt to prevent the shot. 21white crosses, airborne, a space absolutely free from opponents, but before landing he impacts 34blue right leg definitely out of the shooter’s cylinder. Both players fallen on the floor. The centre and trail refs call a foul indicated as an offensive foul, the ball doesn’t enter the basket.

Continue reading Seek and ye shall find!

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One of the biggest difficulties in refereeing basketball is contacts evaluation among players in movement. A decision taken only on the final moment – impact – often is not enough to “guess” the responsible and “strike” the call. Refereeing is not a bet : knowledge of the play and of the rules must be conjugated with a punctual reading of the play, mostly when the players collide coming from different directions and often floating in the air.

What happened: 3blue receive in the 3pts area, start in cross to ovrtake his opponent, two dribbles end jump for a shoot in the paint, 9 and 21yellow close the space infront the semicircle. 3blue and 9yellow fall on the floor. Centre and trail ref call a foul, their body language is eloquent: they exactly call one the opposite of the other! While the ball lies in the net for blue overtake, the trail ref makes “a step back” and let the scene to his mate: defensive foul, 3blue basket&1 which leads blue tem to 100pts and final victory.

On the rule book the criteria is extremely clear: after establishing a defensive legal guard position, the defensive player may move to guard is opponent, and move laterally or backwards in order to maintain the initial legal guarding position, and if the contact is on the torso of the defending player he’s responsible of the contact and an offensive foul must be called if the defensive player receive a damage or a disadvantage physical/technical.

9yellow executes perfectly his defensive movement, stopping outside the no-charge semicircle before 3blue lift from the floor;

9yellow steps backwards his right foot leaving space for the offensive player which causes the contact before releasing the shoot; charging foul!

The basket have to be cancelled and the game resumed with a throw-in yellow on the side line at free throw line extended.

After the release (you find the link under) Euroleague decides to stops the referees of the games, revoking nominations just sended. The referees have “jumped” the following four days of the tournament.

For further informations you may click on this links:

Where with Tommaso Tani we make a detailed analysis of the play in the podcast 3PO (only Italian version available)

Euroleague press release: https://www.euroleague.net/news/i/aaaw3k4ot9ucr8p8/euroleague-basketball-report-on-fenerbahce-beko-istanbul-valencia-basket-defensive-foul-call

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Jump & Land!


The players jump! The four clips below are very interesting, in more of them the referee miss the call, probably surprised by the player’s play! We want to deepen our previous topic (*):

11blue receive the ball and is ready to shoot from the 3pts area. After 11blue has lifted both feet an opponent try to block the shoot, without touching nor the ball or the body of the shooter. To avoid the block 11blue throw the ball to the floor. Once landed the 11blue picks the ball and shoot again. – Violation / nobody calls –

25white receive the ball and want to shoot immediately. After he has lifted both feet from the floor, 25 White realize that the difensive player is coming, 25white interrupt the shooting movement to avoid the block, then before Landing he throws the ball, with a crooked pass, towards his mate on his left side. – Legal –

25white gains the rebound after the 3pts shoot by 0white. Probably he thinks to shoot immediately, but the continuos movement has been interrupted. 25white jumps & lands with the ball in his hands. After landing 25white starts a dribble and try a shoot. – Violation / nobody calls –

16red receive a pass and try immediately to shoot while 0white defend on him. After he has lifted both feet from the floor and the way to basket is closed by the opponent, 16red throws the ball on the floor and after landing he picks the ball to shoot again. 0white didn’t touch the ball and the ball didn’t touch him.– Violation / nobody calls –

A player who holds the ball may jump; when he is airborne and before landing on the floor with one foot or both feet he:

  • can only Shoot and Pass
  • cannot dribble: if the ball exits from the hand(s) after lifting the pivot foot he commits a violation.

If the players loses the control of the ball which escapes from the hand/s, he doesn’t commit any violation (fumble).

Some people say: the player let the ball falling down. What does it means? Did he release a shoot? Did he release a pass? Is it a fumble? Is it a dribble? We have other options: if any other player touches or is touched by the ball?  We think that if a player let the ball falling on the floor, he is dribbling.  A dribble is “a movement of a live ball caused by a player in control of ball who throws, taps, rolls or bounce the ball on the floor”. (RB24.1.1)

The referee must be able to read the play and recognize the movement of the players, as they do when they evaluate an act of shooting. For a referee is useless to say to everybody body “I have seen” waving his arms;  especially when the player commits a violation! A call/no call can be wrong although the explanation is accepted.

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