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New NBA Rule Changes for Gameplay From Board of Governors

May 25, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart (36) talks to an official during the second quarter against the Miami Heat in game five of the Eastern Conference Finals for the 2023 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. Smart is known as one of the most frequent culprits of flopping, a rule the NBA Board of Governors looks to handle this season. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA Board of Governors voted yesterday to institute two new rule changes ahead of the 2023-2024 NBA season. The rules address situations that the league and its players and coaches have taken issue with in the past few seasons. Both adjustments were suggested to the Board by the NBA’s competition committee of players, coaches, referees and more. With changes to the flopping rules and coach’s challenge system, the NBA will look a little different next season.

New NBA Rules Changes for Gameplay From Board of Governors


The first rule change is an attempt to decrease flopping across the league. If a referee calls a flop, a technical foul will be issued to the flopping player’s team and the opposing team will receive a free throw. The penalty will not change possession of the ball and cannot be reviewed by a coach’s challenge but can be added, if necessary, on review of a different call.  

Flopping calls are not during mid-action. A referee will not stop a play to make the call but will instead wait for the next stop in live action to make their call.  

The current flopping protocol will also stay in place. The league fine players $2,000 for their first and increasingly if they continue flopping. There are no ejections from games on flopping violations. 

Hopefully, this change can purify the game a bit. For the past few years, NBA players garnered a reputation of hunting for fouls and selling even the slightest of contact. This will increase the game’s skill level even further and force players to actually draw fouls without embellishing as much.  

The change is on a one-year trial basis. 

2nd Coach’s Challenge 

The NBA has expanded the use of the coach’s challenge nearly five years after its introduction. A coach will now receive a second challenge attempt only if their first is successful. If the first challenge is successful, the coach will retain his timeout but the same is untrue for his second challenge. To keep the game flow going, a second successful challenge will still cost the team a timeout.  

This are NBA rule changes that coaches around the league have been clamoring for and they’ve finally got it. It only makes sense that you get another challenge for winning your first, but it won’t pause the game too much if a coach wins both. Oftentimes, coaches would have to choose whether or not to use their challenge early or save it for the end. This can be big down the stretch of close games and keep important players out of foul trouble early.  


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