Saturday, January 23, 2016

Block or a Foul?

I think few things are more exciting than seeing a good blocked shot. I rank swatting someone's shot right up there with dunks. Blocks are an exhilarating part of the game and are also known as swats, rejections, caps, or stuffs. Whatever you call them they all send the same message...ACCESS DENIED!

Some of my favorite NBA shot blockers over the years have been Dwight Howard, Lebron James, Josh Smith, Shaquille O'Neal, Charles Barkley, Dikembe Mutombo, Mark Eaton, Manute Bol, and Hakeem Olajuwon. Here are some highlights of some of the best blocks from the 2014-2015 NBA season.

When I was younger and could jump, I tried blocking as many shots as I could in each game. I know what it is like to cleanly block a shot but then have the ref calls a foul against me if I had too much follow through or if the ref was out of position. As frustrating as it is to have a foul called on a clean block, I think it is even worse when a player gets away with a foul on a shooter but they credit him a block.

I also don't understand why the NBA is so generous when it comes to not calling a foul for the contact after the block. I've literally seen guys block a shot and then fall on top of the shooter or push them out of bounds and for some reason the refs seldom call a foul. I know if it's incidental contact after the block, it shouldn't make a difference, but some players get messed up with no call. Whats up with that? If a guard stole the ball from a his opponent and then hit his arm or pushed him out of bounds after, I have a feeling  they would call a foul, so why look the other way on a blocked shot?

This clip below shows a perfect example of this. Check out play # 5 at 1:07. They featured a blocked shot for one of the top 10 plays of the day. At actual speed it looks good but on the replay the shooter is clearly hit in the face during the block. I see these kind of plays all the time on defensive highlights and just don't get why the additional body contact is not considered a foul.

On the next clip check out play # 8 at the 30 second mark. There is a nice block but then he rides the player out of bounds like a rodeo bull and slams him. I don't get the no call.