June 27, 1997
An NBA phenomenon was snuffed out yesterday. It began three years ago
when Jason Kidd, falling out of bounds, decided to call a timeout. Time
was granted and, soon after, the leaping, on-your-way-out-of-bounds
timeout became as popular as tattoos.
more. Yesterday, the NBA's Board of Governors approved four rules
changes for the 1997-98 season. One of them was the timeout
clarification: a timeout cannot be called by a player if both his feet
are in the air or if any part of his body has broken the imaginary plane
of the baseline/sideline. (Question: what's to stop a player from
calling time when he sees a teammate falling out of bounds with the
The governors also returned the
3-point line to its original home - 23 feet 9 inches from the basket. It
had been 22 feet the last three years and will remain at 22 in the
corners this season. Because of the change, you will see fewer marginal
shooters venturing to the arc. You will also see offenses spread out and
more maneuverability in the paint.
also will not be allowed to use their forearms to stop an offensive
player who is facing the basket in the frontcourt and the "no charge"
area near the basket has been expanded.
One man who should be happy is Rick Pitino.
The president and coach of the Celtics would like to have a team that
has 90-plus possessions rather than the high 70s-low 80s league average.