Intentional fouling, aka “Hack-a-Shaq,” is often a drag on an NBA game. We saw plenty of it when the San Antonio Spurs did it to DeAndre Jordan in the first round, and Dwight Howard has been on the receiving end of it plenty of times over the course of his career as well. Jordan and Howard will face off in the second round, so we might see plenty of this strategy, which is sure to lead to plenty of complaining.
That complaining might not happen much longer, because CBS Sports’ Ken Berger reports that a rule change designed to eliminate the “Hack-a-Shaq” strategy is on the unofficial agenda when the competition committee meets in Las Vegas in July. Berger says there’s about an 85 percent chance of the competition committee recommending a rule change to the Board of Governors to be passed and implemented for next season.
The current rules allow for teams to intentionally foul off the ball up until two minutes left in the game. The rule change would likely involve intentional fouls off the ball resulting in a technical free throw and possession for the team getting fouled.
There’s sure to be mixed reaction if there’s a rule change. While I’d be all for it, some believe bad free throw shooters shouldn’t be let off the hook for not being able to shoot free throws and “Hack-a-Shaq” is a perfectly fair strategy. I understand that logic, but I really can’t stand when games get bogged down by intentional fouling.