Yahoo! Sports reported that Stern is interested in aggressively combatting the late-game strategy known as 'hack-a-shaq'.
There is a perfectly reasonable argument on why it is a bad idea for punishing hack-a-shaq. As the article acknowledged, "no coach would identify hacking targets if players simply made their free throws." While I understand this point, I think maintaining an entertaining and free-flowing game is more important. It sucked to watch in the Shaq years, and it still sucks now with Tiago, Dwight etc.
However, what is NOT reasonable is Stern's recommended plan to stomp out the 'Hack-a-Shaq' strategy. Stern has float out there that 'off-ball fouls in the final two minutes of games give the fouled team 2 free throws AND the ball back. That kind of penalty is too steep IMO. Clearly, it would scare any coach from hacking a bad free-throw shooter such as Dwight... But off-ball fouls sometimes just happen, not just in hacking situations. To give the ball back to the fouled team can kill a comeback on what could be a bad call or overly aggressive perimeter defense.
Again, I think that Hack-a-Shaq needs to be prevented but in a different way. If I was commissioner I would say that the player with the ball last gets to shoot the free throws when off-ball fouls happen late in games. Obviously, this isn't as aggressive as Stern's plan but I think it would still help stomp out the problem. Hacking strategies usually happen when the ball is being passed around the perimeter anyway.
Either way, giving the ball back to the fouled team is too heavy handed, and would allow a team to get a quick 4+ points. I wanted to share my thoughts on this, because something may go into effect next season. Thanks for reading.
Sorry, but I'm siding with the "make your free throws" statement. Many of these players have the money and resources to invest in personal sessions with shooting trainers.
As much as I hate the Hack-A-Shaq strategy, it's your damn job to make free-throws and improve yourself as a player.
I mean, that's why these guys get paid millions of dollars, to improve and showcase their skills. If they can't even improve a simple skill such as free-throw shooting, they should be penalized, not rewarded.
i would definitely murder stern myself if he eliminates the hack-a-shaq (or howard nowadays). its part of the game to make those easy free throws...its called the charity line for a reason. i really dont think its fair to eliminate that strategy.
So because one player, sucks donkey balls at making freethrows, we are ready to change the rule? Is this some kind of joke? What is wrong with exploiting a teams weakness? I thought competition was all about exploiting another teams weakness! Come on son...
Yeah it's ridiculous, you shouldn't accommodate poor FT shooters; maybe extend it, but off the ball fouls happen by accident all the time, is he suggesting they should get FTs and the ball then too?
Yes. Stern is recommended that the fouled team gets 2 shots and ball. Ridiculous over reach. I agree that it's pathetic that players can't make their free throws, but stopping hack-a-shaq isn't 'accommodating them'. The reason I think the strategy should be curbed is because it kills the game. People like you and I will always watch games, but I worry that many tune out when free throws happen every 10 seconds. Whatever, I may be overthinking this but I want to keep the game of basketball growing.
I'm basically getting to the point were I don't like the end of many basketball games because it slows down so much. I'd suggest something less sever than what Stern is talking about, but there is a problem in basketball when people intentionally foul at the end of the game to stop the clock. First it so rarely changes the outcome of the game. Second, for the fans that have watched the entire game waiting to see the outcome, it means we have to sit through something which is basically boring. You could make a game about shooting free throws. But, I'm fairly sure that none of us would pay big bucks to watch a free throw shooting contest between two teams. So I thing a rule change is beneficial here. Maybe a foul off the ball should result in three FTs. Call the third shot a technical and allow anyone on the team to take that shot.
By the way, from an efficiency standpoint, the a trip to the FT line is the most efficient shot in basketball after the dunk. It beats the corner three easy as well as any sort of contested layup. Now that depends on the player. But to keep up with the average NBA offense, you only need to hit about 47% of your FTs. That's partially because if you miss the second one your team has a shot at an offensive rebound. So hacking anyone (other than Drummond and Biedrins) is unlikely to allow you to catch up. But if time is your enemy, then fouling at least stops the clock.