20 October, 2020
09 May, 2021
12 Robin Benzing (ZARA)
Tough Calls
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Tough Calls - Play-Offs Gameday 5

MIES (Switzerland) - Each week, experts are analysing the games. In order to improve the understanding of referees' decisions and to increase the transparency towards our fans, we publish some of those "tough calls", together with an explanation.

Please find below this week's "tough calls":

Tough Call 1: Casademont Zaragoza vs Dinamo Sassari - Screening

Red 9 is dribbling the ball to the front court when a contact occurs between Red 31 and Blue 6. There is no call from the referees. 

Article 33.5     When guarding a player who does not control the ball, the elements of time and distance shall apply. A defensive player cannot take a position so near and/or so quickly in the path of a moving opponent that the latter does not have sufficient time or distance either to stop or change his direction.

The distance is directly proportional to the speed of the opponent, but never less than 1 normal step.

If a defensive player does not respect the elements of time and distance in taking his initial legal guarding position and contact with an opponent occurs, he is responsible for the contact.

Outcome: Incorrect decision from the referees. All three referees were following the action with the ball and they missed the illegal contact created by Blue 6.


Tough Call 2: Hapoel Unet-Credit Holon vs Happy Casa Brindisi - Contact in the AOS

Yellow 11 attempts a 2-point field goal and a contact with Black 6 occurs while the shooter is still airborne. The ball doesn’t enter the basket. The referee calls a personal foul to Black 6 and awards 2 free throws to Yellow 11. 

Article 33.2     The offensive player, whether on the floor or airborne, shall not cause contact with the defensive player in a legal guarding position by:

  • Using his arms to create more space for himself (pushing off).
  • Spreading his legs or arms to cause contact during or immediately after a shot for a field goal.

Outcome: Incorrect decision from the referees. Black 6 didn’t create any contact with the shooter. It was the shooter who created this contact by spreading his leg.


Tough Call 3: Hapoel Unet-Credit Holon vs Happy Casa Brindisi - Backcourt violation

Yellow 11 is bouncing the ball in his front court. He passes the ball to Yellow 10, who passes it to Yellow 25. A defender taps the ball and then the ball is touched by Yellow 25 still in his front court, and then moving into his back court. The referee calls a backcourt violation. 

Article 30.1.2  A team in control of a live ball in the frontcourt has caused the ball to be illegally returned to its backcourt, if a player of that team is the last to touch the ball in his frontcourt and the ball is then first touched by a player of that team:

  • Who has part of his body in contact with the backcourt, or
  • After the ball has touched the backcourt of that team.

Outcome: Correct decision from the referees. The Yellow team has caused the ball to be illegally returned to its backcourt.


Tough Call 4: Igokea vs Hereda San Pablo Burgos - Travelling

White 12 receives the ball from a throw-in and attempts a 3-point field goal, which he makes. 

Article 25.2.1  A player who catches the ball while standing with both feet on the floor:

  • The moment one foot is lifted, the other foot becomes the pivot foot.
    • To pass or shoot for a field goal, the player may jump off a pivot foot, but neither foot may be returned to the floor before the ball is released from the hand(s).

Outcome: Incorrect decision from the referees. When White 12 catches the ball, he had both feet on the floor. He lifted his right foot, so his left foot became the pivot foot, then he lifted his pivot foot, and it touched the floor again before releasing the ball for the shot. Travelling violation.