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A. Technical Foul
Section I-Illegal Defenses
a. Illegal defenses which violate the rules and accepted guidelines set forth are not permitted in the NBA.
b. When the offensive team is in its backcourt with the ball, no illegal defense violation may occur.
(1) Penalties for Illegal Defenses.
On the first violation, the 24-second clock is reset to 24. On the second and succeeding violations, the clock is reset to 24 and one free throw (technical) is attempted. When a violation occurs during the last 24 seconds of any period (including overtime), regardless of the number of prior offenses, one free throw is awarded for the violation. (On all violations, the ball is awarded to the offended team out-of-bounds at the free throw line extended on either side of the court.)
EXCEPTION: If a field goal attempt is simultaneous with a whistle for an illegal violation, and that attempt is successful, the basket shall count and the violation is nullified.
(2) Guidelines for Defensive Coverage
a. Weakside defenders may be in a defensive position within the "outside lane" with no time limit, and within the "Inside lane" for 2.9 seconds. The defensive player must re-establish a position with both feet out of the "Insidelane" to be considered as having legally cleared the restricted area.
b. When a defensive player is guarding an offensive player who is adjacent (posted-up) to the 3-second lane, the defensive player may be within the "inside lane" area with no time limitations. An offensive player shall be ruled as "postedup" when he is within 3' of the free throw lane line. A hash mark on the baseline denotes the 3' area.
c. An offensive player without the ball may not be double-teamed from the weakside. Only the player with the ball may be double-teamed by a weakside defensive player. Weakside and strongside restrictions shall extend from the baseline to the midcourt line.
d. When an offensive player, with or without the ball, takes a position above the foul line, the defensive player may be no farther (toward the baseline) than the "middle defensive area." Defensive player(s) may enter and re-enter the "lower defensive area" as many times as desired, so long as he does not exceed 2.9 seconds.
e. When a weakside offensive player is above the free throw line extended, his defensive man may be no lower than the "middle defensive area" extended for more than 2.9 seconds. When a weakside offensive player is below the free throw line extended, his defensive man must vacate the "inside lane" unless his man is positioned adjacent (posted up) to the threesecond lane extended. When a weakside offensive player is above the tip of the circle, his defensive man must be no lower than the "upper defensive area" for more than 2.9 seconds. When a strongside offensive player is above the tip of the circle extended, his defensive man may be no lower than the free-throw line extended (upper defensive area) for more than 2.9 seconds. When a strongside offensive player is above the free throw line extended "upper defensive area, his defensive man may be no lower than the "middle defensive area" for more than 2.9 seconds. When an offensive player on the strongside is below the free throw line extended "middle defensive area," his defender must take a position below the free throw line extended immediately or double-team the ball as soon as the ball crosses midcourt. There is no 2.9 time limit. If the offensive player relocates to a position above the free throw line extended, his defender may take a similar position no farther than one defensive area away within 2.9 seconds. In all of the situations above, a defensive player may always aggressively double-team the ball regardless of his previous position on the floor.
f. When an offensive player takes a position above the tip of the circle, with or without the ball, the defensive player may be no farther (toward the baseline) from him than the "upper defensive area."
g. A defensive player must follow his weakside offensive man, switch to another man at an area of intersection, or double-team the ball. There is no 2.9-second time limit on this play. A defensive player must execute one of these three options or he is guilty of an illegal defense immediately.
h. A defensive player must follow his strongside offensive man, switch to another man at an area of intersection, or double-team the ball. There is a 2.9-second time limit on this play which commences when the defensive player reaches the weakside and "opens up."
i. A double team is when two or more defenders aggressively pursue a player with the ball to a position close enough for a held ball to occur. Failure to comply with paragraphs (a) through (i) above will result in an Illegal Defense violation.
Section II-Excessive Timeouts
Requests for timeout in excess of the authorized number shall be granted. However, a technical foul penalty shall be assessed. A team is entitled to all regular timeout privileges.
EXCEPTION: During the last two minutes of the fourth period and/or overtime(s), the offensive team shall not have the option of putting the ball into play at the midcourt line.
Section III-Delay of Game
a. A player shall not delay the game by preventing the ball from being promptly put into play such as:
(1) Attempting to gain an advantage by interfering with the ball after a goal.
(2) Failing to immediately pass the ball to the nearest official when a violation is called.
(3) Batting the ball away from an opponent before the player has the opportunity to inbound the ball.
(4) Crossing the plane of the boundary line, as a defensive player, prior to the ball being inbounded.
b. A team shall not prevent play from commencing at any time.
c. Any person seated on the bench shall not interfere with a ball which is determined to be in play (Rule 8-Section II-g).
PENALTY: First offense is a warning, with each successive offense to be penalized by a technical foul which is charged to the team. Each offense will be announced by the Public Address Announcer. On each offense, the 24-second clock shall remain the same, or be reset to 10 seconds, whichever is greater. The offensive team shall be awarded a new 10 seconds if the ball is in the backcourt. If repeated acts become a travesty, the coach shall be held responsible upon being notified of same.
a. A substitute (standing in the 8' Box) shall not enter the court without reporting to the scorer and being beckoned by an official.
b. A substitute shall not be allowed to re-enter the game after having been disqualified.
EXCEPTION: Rule 3-Section I-b.
c. It is the responsibility of each team to have the proper number of players on the court at all times. Failure to do so, when the ball is alive, will result in a technical foul being assessed.
EXCEPTION: If the violation occurs on the first of multiple free throw attempts, it shall be ignored.
d. Penalty for failure to report to the scorer is a $25 fine. No technical foul is assessed.
Section V-Basket Ring, Backboard or Support
a. An offensive player who deliberately hangs on his basket ring, net, backboard or support during the game shall be assessed a non-unsportsmanlike technical foul and a $100 fine.
EXCEPTION: A player may hang on the basket ring, backboard or support to prevent an injury to himself or another player, with no penalty.
b. A defensive player who deliberately hangs on his opponent's basket ring, net, backboard or support, in an attempt to touch a loose ball which may have an opportunity to score, shall be assessed an unsportsmanlike technical foul. The offensive team shall be awarded a successful field goal. The technical foul shall be assessed whether or not the ball is touched.
c. Should a defensive player deliberately hang on the basket ring, backboard or support to successfully touch a ball which is in possession of an opponent, an unsportsmanlike technical foul shall be assessed.
d. See Rule 10-Section XIII-A.
a. An official may assess a technical foul, without prior warning, at any time. A technical foul(s) may be assessed any player on the court or anyone seated on the bench for conduct which, in the opinion of an official, is detrimental to the game.
b. A maximum of two technicals for unsportsmanlike acts may be assessed any player, coach or trainer. Any of these offenders may be ejected for committing only one unsportsmanlike act, and they must be ejected for committing two unsportsmanlike acts.
c. A technical foul called for (1) delay of game, (2) coaches box violations, (3) illegal defensive violations, or (4) having a team total of fewer or more than five players when the ball is alive, or (5) hanging on the basket ring or backboard, is not considered an act of unsportsmanlike conduct.
EXCEPTION: Rule 12A-Section V-b and c.
d. A technical foul shall be assessed for unsportsmanlike tactics such as:
(1) Disrespectfully addressing an official
(2) Physically contacting an official
(3) Overt actions indicating resentment to a call
(4) Use of profanity
(5) A coach entering onto the court without permission of an official
(6) A deliberately thrown elbow or any attempted physical act with no contact involved
e. Cursing or blaspheming an official shall not be considered the only cause for imposing technical fouls. Running tirades, continuous criticism or griping may be sufficient cause to assess a technical. Excessive misconduct shall result in ejection from the game.
f. Assessment of a technical foul shall be avoided whenever and wherever possible; but, when they are necessary, they are to be assessed without delay or procrastination. Once a player has been ejected or the game is over, technicals cannot be assessed regardless of the provocation. Any additional unsportsmanlike conduct shall be reported by datagram immediately to the Operations Department.
g. If a technical foul is assessed on a team following a personal foul on the same team, the free throw attempt for the technical foul shall be administered first.
h. The ball shall be awarded to the team which had possession at the time the technical foul was assessed, whether the free-throw attempt is successful or not. Play shall be resumed by a throw-in nearest the spot where play was interrupted.
i. Anyone guilty of illegal contact which occurs during a dead ball may be assessed (1) a technical foul, if the contact is deemed to be unsportsmanlike in nature, or (2) a flagrant foul, if unnecessary and/or excessive contact occurs.
j. Free throws awarded for a technical foul must be attempted by a player in the game when the technical foul is assessed.
(1) If a substitute is beckoned into the game prior to the technical foul being assessed, he is eligible to attempt the free throw(s).
(2) If the technical foul is assessed before the opening tap, any player listed in the scorebook as a starter is eligible to attempt the free throw(s).
(3) If a technical foul is assessed before the starting lineup is indicated, any player on the squad may attempt the free throw(s).
k. A technical foul, unsportsmanlike act or flagrant foul must be called for a participant to be ejected. A player, coach or trainer may be ejected for:
(1) An elbow foul which makes contact shoulder level or below
(2) Any unsportsmanlike conduct where a technical foul is assessed
(3) A flagrant foul where unnecessary and/or excessive contact occurs
EXCEPTION: Rule 12A-Section VI-1(5)
1. A player, coach or trainer must be ejected for:
(1) A punching foul
(2) A fighting foul
(3) An elbow foul which makes contact above shoulder level
(4) An attempted punch which does not make contact
(5) Deliberately entering the stands other than as a continuance of playing. Eye guarding (placing a hand in front of the opponent's eyes when guarding from the rear) a player who does not have possession of the ball is illegal and an unsportsmanlike technical shall be assessed.
n. No free throw attempts are awarded when a double technical foul is called. A free throw attempt is awarded when all other technical fouls are assessed.
o. The deliberate act of throwing the ball or any object at an official by a player, coach or trainer is a technical foul and violators are subject to ejection from the game.
p. Punching fouls and elbow fouls, although recorded as both personal and team fouls, are unsportsmanlike acts and shall be counted toward a total of two for ejection. The player may be ejected immediately. (See Comments on the Rules-11. Basic Principles-M.)
Section VII-Fighting Fouls
a. Technical fouls shall be assessed players, coaches or trainers for fighting. No free throws will be attempted as in any other double foul situation. The participants will be ejected immediately.
b. This rule applies whether play is in progress or the ball is dead.
c. A fine not exceeding $20,000 and/or suspension may be imposed upon such person(s) by the commissioner at his sole discretion.
a. Recipients of technical fouls for unsportsmanlike conduct will be assessed a $100 fine for the first offense, and an additional $150 for the second offense in any one given game, for a minimum total of $250. If a player is ejected on (1) the first technical foul for unsportsmanlike conduct, (2) a punching foul, (3) a fighting foul, (4) an elbow foul, or (5) a flagrant foul, he shall be fined a minimum of $250.
b. Whether or not said player(s) are ejected, a fine not exceeding $20,000 and/or suspension may be imposed upon such player(s) by the Commissioner at his sole discretion.
c. During a fight all players not in the game must remain in the vicinity of their bench. Violators will be assessed a minimum of a $2,500 fine.
d. A player, coach or assistant coach, upon being notified by an official that he has been ejected from the game, must leave the playing area IMMEDIATELY and remain in the dressing room of his team during such suspension until completion of the game or leave the building. Violation of this rule shall call for an automatic fine of $500. A fine not to exceed $20,000 and possible forfeiture of the game may be imposed for any violation of this rule.
e. Any player who in the opinion of the officials has deliberately hung on the basket shall be assessed a technical foul and a fine of $100.
EXCEPTION: A player fouled in the act of dunking or shooting may hang on the rim to prevent an injury to himself or to another player with no penalty.
f. Penalty for the use of "Stick-um" is a fine of $25 for the first violation, doubled for each subsequent violation. (Rule 10-Section XII).
g. Any player who fails to properly report to the scorer (Rule 3-Section V-a) shall be subject to a $25 fine on recommendation of the official scorer.
h. At halftime and the end of each game, the coach and his players are to leave the court and go directly to their dressing room, without pause or delay. There is to be absolutely no talking to game officials.
PENALTY: $500 fine to be doubled for any additional violation.
i. Each player, when introduced prior to the start of the game, must be uniformly dressed.
PENALTY: $100 fine.
j. A $250 fine shall be assessed to any player(s) hanging on the rim during pre-game warm-ups. Officials shall be present during warm-ups to observe violations.
k. Any player who is assessed a flagrant foul penalty (2) must be ejected and will be fined a minimum of $250. The incident will be reported to the Operations Department.
B. Personal Foul
a. A player shall not hold, push, charge into or impede the progress of an opponent by extending an arm, leg or knee or by bending the body into a position that is not normal.
b. Contact caused by a defensive player approaching the ball holder from the rear is a form of pushing or holding.
c. Two free throw attempts are awarded for an elbow foul. It is also an unsportsmanlike act. If the elbow contact is above shoulder level, the player will be ejected. If the elbow contact is shoulder level or below, the player may be ejected at the discretion of the official. Contact must occur for an elbow foul to be called. (See Rule 12A-Section VI-d(6) for non-contact by an elbow.)
d. A defensive player is not permitted to retain hand contact with an offensive player when the player is in his "sights." Hand checking will be eliminated by rigid enforcement of this rule by all officials. The illegal use of hands will not be permitted.
e. Any player whose actions against an opponent cause illegal contact with yet another offensive player is guilty of a personal foul and will be penalized accordingly.
f. Contact which occurs on the shooting hand of the offensive player, while that hand is in contact with the ball, is not illegal.
Section II-By Dribbler
a. A dribbler shall not (1) charge into an opponent who has established a legal guarding position or (2) attempt to dribble between two opponents, or between an opponent and a boundary, where sufficient space is not available for contact to be avoided.
b. If a dribbler has sufficient space between two opponents, or between an opponent and a boundary, to have his head and shoulders in advance of them, the responsibility for illegal contact is on the opponent.
c. If a dribbler in his progress has established a straight line path, he may not be crowded out of that path.
d. If an opponent is able to establish a legal defensive position in that path, the dribbler must avoid contact by changing his direction or ending his dribble.
e. The dribbler must be in control of his body at all times.
f. A dribbler may not legally dribble again after a personal foul has been called.
Section III-By Screening
A player who sets a screen shall not (1) take a position closer than a normal step from an opponent, if that opponent is stationary and unaware of the screener's position, (2) make illegal contact with an opponent when he assumes a position at the side or front of an opponent, (3) take a position so close to a moving opponent that illegal contact cannot be avoided by that opponent without changing direction or stopping, or (4) move laterally or toward an opponent being screened after having assumed a legal screening position. The screener may move in the same direction and path of the opponent being screened. In (3) above, the speed of the opponent being screened will determine what the screener's stationary position may be. This position will vary and may be one to two normal steps or strides from his opponent.
Section IV-Penalties for Sections I, II, III
The penalty for any violation of the sections above will be as follows:
a. The offender is charged with a personal foul. The offended team is awarded; (1) ball out-of-bounds if an offensive foul is assessed, (2) ball out-of-bounds if penalty situation is not in effect, (3) one free throw attempt 1 if there is a successful field goal on the play, or (4) one free throw attempt plus a penalty free throw attempt if the offended player was not in the act of shooting.
b. If contact committed against a player, with or without the ball, is judged flagrant, the infraction shall be penalized as follows:
PENALTY: (1) Two free throw attempts and possession of the ball out-of-bounds at the free throw line extended.
EXCEPTION: Rule 12B-Section V-Articles b and c.
(2) Offender may also be ejected if there is no apparent effort to play the ball, and/or if in the official's judgment, the contact was of such an excessive nature that an injury could have occurred.
(3) A personal foul is charged to the player and a team foul to the team.
(4) If the offended player is unable to attempt his free throws, his coach may select any player, on or off the floor, to do so. His coach will also select the substitute to replace the offended player. This penalty can be assessed only if the offender is ejected as in (2) above.
(5) The flagrant foul is considered an unsportsmanlike act if the player is ejected.
(6) The flagrant foul may be assessed whether the ball is dead or alive. Contact must occur.
c. A second free throw shall be awarded if the personal foul is:
(1) Committed against an offensive player attempting a field goal which is unsuccessful.
(2) For illegal contact with an elbow. Free throw attempt(s) are awarded whether the ball is dead, in possession, loose, or away from the play in the last two minutes of regulation or overtime(s). Contact must occur.
(3) Committed by a defensive player whose team has exceeded the limit for team fouls in the period.
(4) Committed by a defensive player prior to the ball being released on a throw-in from out-of-bounds.
EXCEPTION: Rule 12B-Section X.
(5) Committed against an offensive player in the frontcourt, if either he or a teammate has a clear path to the basket and thereby is deprived of the opportunity to score. The new possession must originate in the backcourt. There must be a minimum of one offensive player in the frontcourt.
(6) For intentionally undercutting an opponent.
d. If a personal foul is committed on a player who is subsequently ejected from the game before attempting any or all of the awarded free throw(s), the ejected player must leave the court immediately. The opposing coach will select one of the four remaining players on the floor to attempt the remaining free throw(s). The ejected player's coach will select the substitute.
e. When a personal foul is committed on an offensive player who, as part of a continuous motion which started before the illegal contact occurred, attempted a field goal, that field goal shall be scored if successful, even if the ball leaves his hands after the whistle has sounded. The offensive player must be attempting a field goal or starting his motion at the time the personal foul occurs. The field goal will not be scored if time on the game clock expires before the ball leaves the player's hand.
f. A personal foul committed by the offensive team during a throw-in shall be an offensive foul, regardless of whether the ball has been released or not.
EXCEPTION: Flagrant, elbow, and punching fouls.
Section V-Free Throw Penalty Situations
a. Each team shall be limited to four team fouls per regulation period without additional penalties. Common team fouls charged to a team in excess of four will be penalized by one free throw attempt plus an additional free throw attempt.
(1) The first four fouls committed by a team in any regulation period, if non-shooting, shall result in the ball being awarded to the opponent at the sideline nearest where the personal foul occurred. The ball shall be awarded no nearer to the baseline than the free throw line extended.
(2) The first three fouls committed by a team In any overtime period, if non-shooting, shall result in the ball being awarded to the opponent at the sideline nearest where the personal foul occurred. The ball shall be awarded no nearer to the baseline than the free throw line extended.
(3) If a team has not committed its quota of four team fouls during the first ten minutes of any regulation period, or its quota of three team fouls during the first three minutes of any overtime period, it shall be permitted to incur one team foul during the last two minutes without penalty.
(4) During each regulation or overtime period an additional penalty free throw will be awarded when the quota of team fouls has been reached.
(5) Personal fouls which are flagrant, punching, elbowing or away from the play will carry their own separate penalties and are included in the team foul total.
(6) Personal fouls committed against an offensive player in the act of shooting will result In two free throw attempts being awarded. No additional free throws shall be awarded if a penalty situation exists.
(7) Personal fouls committed during a successful field goal attempt, which result in one free throw attempt being awarded, will not result in an additional free throw attempt if the penalty situation exists.
b. A maximum of three points may be scored by the same team on a successful two-point field goal attempt.
c. A maximum of four points may be scored by the same team on a successful 3-point field goal attempt.
Section VI-Double Fouls
a. No free throw attempts will be awarded on double fouls, whether they are personal or technical.
b. Double personal fouls shall add to a player's total, but not to the team total.
c. If a double or fighting foul occurs, the team in possession of the ball at the time of the call shall retain possession. Play is resumed out-of-bounds on the sideline, nearest the point where play was interrupted. The 24-second clock is reset to 24 seconds.
d. If a double or fighting foul occurs with neither team in possession, or when the ball is in the air on an unsuccessful field goal attempt, play will be resumed with a jump ball at the center circle between any two opponents in the game at that time. If injury, ejection or disqualification makes it necessary for any player to be replaced, no substitute may participate in the jump ball.
e. If a double or fighting foul occurs on a successful field goal attempt, the team that has been scored upon will inbound the ball at the baseline as after any other score.
f. If a double foul occurs as a result of a difference in opinion by the officials, no points can be scored and play shall resume with a jump ball at the center circle between any two opponents in the game at that time. No substitute may participate in the jump ball.
Section VII-Offensive Fouls
A personal foul assessed against an offensive player which is neither an elbow, punching or flagrant foul shall be penalized in the following manner:
(1) No points can be scored by the offensive team.
(2) The offending player is charged with a personal foul.
(3) The offending team is not charged with a team foul.
EXCEPTION: Rule 3-Section I-a. No free throws are awarded.
Section VIII-Loose Ball Fouls
a. A personal foul, which is neither a punching, flagrant or an elbow foul, committed while there is no team possession, shall be administered in the following manner:
(1) Offending team is charged with a team foul.
(2) Offending player is charged with a personal foul.
(3) Offended team will be awarded possession at the sideline, nearest the spot of foul, if no penalty exists.
(4) Offended player is awarded one free throw attempt plus a penalty free throw attempt if the offending team is in a penalty situation.
b. If a "loose ball" foul called against the defensive team is then followed by a successful field goal/free throw attempt, a free throw attempt will be awarded to the offended team, allowing for the three point or four point play. This interpretation applies:
(1) Regardless of which offensive player is fouled.
(2) Whether or not the penalty situation exists. The ball can never be awarded to the scoring team out-of-bounds following a personal foul which occurs on the same play.
c. If a "loose ball" foul called against the offensive team is then followed by a successful field goal attempt by an offensive player, no points may be scored.
Section IX-Punching Fouls
a. Illegal contact called on a player for punching is a personal foul and a team foul. One free-throw attempt shall be awarded, regardless of the number of previous fouls in the period. The ball shall be awarded to the offended team out-of-bounds at midcourt, whether the free throw is successful or unsuccessful.
b. Any player who throws a punch, whether it connects or not, has committed an unsportsmanlike act. He will be ejected immediately and suspended for a minimum of one game.
c. This rule applies whether play is in progress or the ball is dead.
d. In the case where one punching foul is followed by another, all aspects of the rule are applied in both cases, and the team last offended is awarded possession at midcourt.
e. A fine not exceeding $20,000 and/or suspension may be imposed upon such player(s) by the commissioner at his sole discretion. (See Rule 12A-Section VIII-C.)
Section X-Away-from-the-Play Foul
a. During the last two minutes of the fourth period or overtime period(s) with the offensive team in possession of the ball, all personal fouls which are assessed against the defensive team prior to the ball being released on a throw-in and/or away-from-the-play, shall be administered as follows:
(1) A personal foul and team foul shall be assessed and one free-throw attempt shall be awarded. The free throw may be attempted by any player in the game at the time the personal foul was committed.
(2) The offended team shall be awarded the ball at the nearest point where play was interrupted with all privileges remaining.
EXCEPTION: Rule 12-B-Section X-b.
b. In the event that the personal foul committed is an elbow foul, the play shall be administered as follows:
(1) A personal foul and team foul shall be assessed and the free throw shooter shall be awarded two free-throw attempts. The free throw(s) may be attempted by any player in the game at the time the personal foul was committed.
(2) In the event that the offended player is unable to participate in the game, the free throw shooter may be selected by his coach from any eligible player on the team. Any substitute must remain in the game until the next dead ball.
c. In the event that the personal foul committed is a flagrant foul, the play shall be administered as follows:
(1) A personal foul and team foul shall be assessed and the free throw shooter shall be awarded two free throw attempts. The free throws may be attempted by any player in the game at the time the flagrant foul was committed.
(2) If a flagrant foul penalty (1) is assessed and the offended player is unable to participate in the game, the substitute will be selected by his coach. The two free throws may be attempted by any of the four remaining players in the game. The ball will be awarded to the offended team at the free throw line extended in the frontcourt. The injured player may return to the game.
(3) If a flagrant foul penalty (2) is assessed and the offended player is unable to participate in the game, the substitute will be selected by his coach. The two free throws may be attempted by the substitute or any of the four remaining players in the game. The ball will be awarded to the offended team at the free throw line extended in the frontcourt. The injured player may return to the game.