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A summer league preview of the 'advance' timeout rule

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Melissa Majchrzak/Getty Images

ESPN insider Kevin Pelton is in Salt Lake City scoping the Jazz summer league and got to see first hand how a subtle rule tweak could affect the NBA in the future.

Late in their close game, a 74-71 Spurs win [over the Sixers], both teams utilized the "advance" timeout being employed in summer league play this year after a D-League trial last season. Instead of a traditional timeout, the advance does just what it says -- allows the team to advance the ball to half court in the last two minutes, like a timeout taken then but without a lengthy stoppage of play. Look for the advance to come to the NBA soon.

To be clear, the advance doesn't count against a team's timeout total.

It's just one in a series of wrinkles in the D-League game, an arena often seen as a laboratory for potential NBA rule changes. For instance, D-League coaches are also granted one "challenge," similar to those used in the NFL.

Here's more from Pelton in Utah, including a scouting of the No. 3 overall pick Jahlil Okafor, as well as why the atmosphere felt like a regular-season game.