Ginobili flop
Admit it: Aren't you a little tired of
seeing this crap game after game?

This has been going on for years: a star player charges headlong toward the basket and then either flails his arms or drops to the floor like a lead brick. Tweet! Foul. The San Antonio Spurs -- specifically Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and especially Manu Ginobili -- have become the undisputed ninja masters of this tactic, and they used it last night to con the referees into an endless litany of freethrows en route to a 41-20 advantage from the line and a 91-79 victory.

By games end, the Spurs had more freethrows (30) than field goals (28), which was a staple of basketball in the 1940s but is generally looked down upon these days. Jerry Sloan and Derek Fisher became so riled up after a late-game Ginobili flop that they got themselves ejected, which led to even more Spurs freethrows and effectively ended the game. The Energy Solutions Arena crowd, which usually doesn't do anything more controversial than boo really loudly, threw lip balm at the retreating Spurs after the game.

It's just another example of lousy NBA officiating. I have two requests for David Stern:

1. Please, for the sake of all that's holy, do something about flopping. It's a throbbing hemorrhoid on the tender butt cheeks of professional basketball. Every player hates flopping, yet every player does it...even Shaq, the loudest anti-flop complainer of them all. And the fans hate it too. It's not fun to watch. There isn't a single redeeming quality to the flop. It's a cheap and cowardly play. The players obviously aren't going to police themselves on this, because it provides an obvious competitive advantage. The league has to step in because it's getting worse by the year.

2. Adopt a "challenge" policy similar to the NFL. Allow NBA coaches to challege two (or more?) calls a game. Make the referees review some of their crummy decisions on the spot. If it is indeed a bad call, it should be overturned; maybe that would embarrass the officials into making the right call next time. If it was the right call, then the challenging team should lose a timeout, or maybe the opposing team should be awarded a technical freethrow. Whatever. But at least it would provide some measure of justice and relief against the obvious and egregious bad officiating.

Is this post a bunch of sour grapes? Maybe. But that doesn't mean that flopping and flailing isn't ridiculous. Imagine if guys started flopping in your pickup league. How well do you suppose that would go over? Take a look at this hilarious YouTube clip and then you be the judge:

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Anonymous Jaz said...
This is one of the all-time great failed flops (Paulus of Duke):

I find that in my pickup games, if someone falls down for some reason, telling them, "enough of the EuroFlopping!" is always good for a laugh.

Blogger CLV said...
I agree 100% on the flopping. I don't think a review policy would help, though. I'd rather just see refs not call fouls on those plays, because it leaves the flopper's team at a disadvantage if play continues. A perfect example is Varejao at the end of Game 2. Had he not flopped, Rasheed probably doesn't make that shot.

Anonymous Anonymous said...
Guys, don´t be so puritans. Sports are also about who is more intelligent to use all the voids in game's rules to take advantage.

And I really enjoy that kind of intelligence, as I laugh at guys that get ejected because they get mad because they are being really stupid.

Guys like Reggie Miller and Manu Ginobili add value to the game, and I totally support the way the play.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am foreign, love your blog, and yeah, all this flopping is getting on my nerves too, but come on, all this talk of ginobili being "the" flopper reeks of xenophobia. it's always the foreign guys being accused of flopping (varejão, oberto, bell...), and there's some truth there, i don't deny it, but i just happen to be watching on tv a team that symbolizes the perfect merge of whining & flopping, and it never gets a mention anywhere.

yeah, it's the pistons, incidentally the nba team that's most representative of inner city america. it's atrocious how billups constantly flops on the offensive end, throwing his legs and himself into the defender to try to get an "and 1" every time he shoots. he does it every time - e-v-e-r-y s-i-n-g-l-e t-i-m-e. yet he's mr big shot.

(dang, there he goes again: he just did it to try to tie it at 88.)

and you talk about ginobili, whose only crime yesterday was getting bitch-slapped by fisher. twice.


Blogger Basketbawful said...
...all this talk of ginobili being "the" flopper reeks of xenophobia.

If you reread my post, you'll notice I wrote "Every player hates flopping, yet every player does it...." I also indicted Tony Parker and Tim Duncan. For the record.

Blogger Basketbawful said...
jaz -- that seriously was the best flop EVER.