The referees are always a touchy subject, especially in the playoffs when little moments can have huge implications. As the games become more and more intense, officials are put in an especially tough position when players are actively trying to trick them on nearly every play, and all fans want is more basketball and fewer whistles.
This week's Five for Friday includes some HoopIdeas that would produce just that: fewer whistles and more awesome playoff basketball.
CURB FOULING BY CALLING MORE FLAGRANT FOULS
If someone -- let’s call him “LeBron” -- is chugging along on the fast break and a defender grabs him around the waist, that should rise to the level of a flagrant foul: “unnecessary contact committed by a player against an opponent.” In that case, LeBron’s team would get two free throws and retain possession. To avoid that fate, defenders would have to make a legitimate play on the ball, which doesn’t seem like too much to ask. If such a rule were enforced, the pace of play would increase and teams in defensive retreat couldn’t use fouls as a get-out-of-jail-free card. -- Josh Levine on Slate
GET RID OF THE RESTRICTED AREA
Jeff Van Gundy suggests the league move the half circle further out. Or maybe it would be best to do away with the half circle all together, forcing the refs to concentrate not on the feet but the position. -- Buck Harvey on San Antonio Express-News
NO TECHS FOR TAUNTING DISTRACTING BENCHES
If the players and coaches on an opposing team’s bench scream, yell, clap or stomp their feet to distract a nearby shooter, that shooter should be able to make any verbal taunt and/or staring gesture he would like upon making the shot. -- SI's Zach Lowe on The Point Forward
NEW PENALTY FOR SIXTH FOUL
It's simple -- add a free throw. After five fouls, every time that player commits a foul, the fouled player gets an extra shot at the stripe. You won't see a ton of extra free throws since guys rarely foul out, but it will really impact how often coaches have to bench their stars early in the game and will ensure that the star can play in a late game situation (though he may want to hide on defense). -- Greg Srolestar
NO MORE FREE THROWS
How about awarding points for fouls, instead of making a team "earn it" at the free throw line. Maybe a point and the ball for a non-shooting foul, two/three points and the ball for a shooting foul? On the one hand, free throws with the game on the line can be an exciting moment, but imagine the possible swings with a system like this -- if you're up four and commit an offensive foul, suddenly the other team is down just one possession with the ball. -- John Adams
JOIN THE CONVERSATION
You can give us your ideas and talk with us and other fans in the following places:
Google+: Go to our HoopIdea Google+ page and discuss
TrueHoop: Read our HoopIdea posts here and contribute on the conversation page
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
And for the truly ambitious: Shoot a short video of yourself explaining your HoopIdea, upload it to YouTube and share the link with us on Twitter or Google+.