It's been a big story over the past few seasons: NBA players—in increasingly large numbers, rather than in isolated instances of Divacs and Lambieers and Reggie Millers—had outsmarted the league and taken advantage of the difficulty on officiating NBA games by just falling on the floor all the time and acting hurt. On Friday, the AP reported that the NBA will curb that behavior the only way it knows how: fines, fines and more fines.
Commissioner David Stern believes too many players are deceiving referees by flopping and has been seeking a way to properly penalize them.
The procedures will likely involve a postgame review of the play by the league office, rather than an official calling an infraction during the game, Frank said. Players would likely be fined if the league determined they flopped.
The proposed plan mirrors a "postgame analysis" option Stern discussed after the competition committee met in June. The league already retroactively reviews flagrant fouls to determine if they need to be upgraded or downgraded.
The AP also dug up what Stern said about flopping during the NBA finals:
"If you continue to do this, you may you have to suffer some consequences. What those exactly should be and what the progression is, is to be decided, because ... we just want to put a stake in the ground that says this is not something that we want to be part of our game, without coming down with a sledgehammer but just doing it in a minimalist way to begin stamping it out. And I think there are ways we can do that and we'll have to wait and see exactly what we come up with."
Wild guess: the "minimalist way," won't eradicate flopping. Most players will keep flopping because they make enough money to pay the fine. There will be continued outcry, and then the league—either very slowly, as happened when the league developed this mostly toothless new rule, or with pointless urgency, as when the league sought to mandate that players wear collared shirts—will decide that a certain number of official flops will trigger a one-game suspension, and then, as with technical fouls, we will see a decline. That will be cool!
In the meantime, the above video is one of Jeff Van Gundy's greatest apoplectic flopping rants, and you can see a couple other of his greatest hits here and here. Many congratulations to Mr. Van Gundy on this special day.