NEW YORK — The NBA is warning players to stop the flop.
If not, it could cost them.
The league will penalize the floppers this season, fining players for repeated violations of an act a league official said Wednesday has “no place in our game.”
Those exaggerated falls to the floor may fool the referees and fans during the game, but officials at league headquarters plan to take a look for themselves afterward.
Players will get a warning the first time, then be fined $5,000 for a second violation. The fines increase to $10,000 for a third offense, $15,000 for a fourth and $30,000 the fifth. Six could lead to a suspension.
“Flops have no place in our game —they either fool referees into calling undeserved fouls or fool fans into thinking the referees missed a foul call,” vice president of basketball operations Stu Jackson said in a statement.
The players’ association plans to file a grievance with the league office and an unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board, arguing that it should have been consulted first before the new rules were implemented.
“The NBA is not permitted to unilaterally impose new economic discipline against the players without first bargaining with the union,” union executive director Billy Hunter said. “We believe that any monetary penalty for an act of this type is inappropriate and without precedent in our sport or any other sport. We will bring appropriate legal action to challenge what is clearly a vague and arbitrary overreaction and overreach by the commissioner’s office.”
However, a number of players expressed support for the policy. Lakers star Kobe Bryant said he hopes it has an impact on the game.
“I like the rule,” he said. “Shameless flopping, that’s a chump move. We’re familiar with it. Vlade (Divac) kind of pioneered it in that playoff series against Shaq, and it kind of worked for him.”
Commissioner David Stern has long sought to end flopping, believing it tricks the referees. But the league determined it would be too difficult for refs to make the call on the floor, preferring instead to leave it to league office reviews. Jackson’s department already reviews flagrant foul penalties to determine if they should be upgraded or downgraded.
Wallace ends retirement, signs with New York: In Greenburgh, N.Y., the New York Knicks have signed forward Rasheed Wallace, a four-time All-Star who is ending a two-year retirement.
The 38-year-old Wallace last played for the Boston Celtics in the 2009-10 season. Terms of his contract signed Wednesday were not announced.
Wallace averaged 14.6 points and 6.7 rebounds in 15 seasons.
VP of operations Davis found dead: In Memphis, Tenn., Dana Davis, vice president of basketball operations for the Memphis Grizzlies, was found dead in his apartment. He was 56.
The Grizzlies confirmed Davis’ death in a statement Wednesday night without elaborating. The Commercial Appeal reported Davis had not been heard from since Tuesday, prompting team personnel to enter his apartment Wednesday with officers from the Memphis Police Department where they found Davis.
Davis oversaw player development programs and travel for the Grizzlies.
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