Prohibitions on defensive players
The NBA introduced some alterations in the rules to make physical play expensive and raise the offensive player’s flow. The first amongst these was made in 1990. There were increased penalties for flagrant fouls. In 1993, 2 more rules were formed. There were penalties for fighting. The second was called as a five points rule. As per this rule, the players who collected a specific number of flagrants were to be automatically suspended. In 1994, hand checking was done away with. Further, in 1997, the players that were facing the basket could not be defended using the forearm.
In 1999 onwards, the NBA did not permit contact by a defending player using his forearms and hands both in the frontcourt and backcourt. The only exception to this rule was in case of offensive players who held the ball under the free throw line extended. The defenders were not permitted to re-route players off the ball. Due to these changes in rules, the perimeter players that used screens to get open were freed up. From that time onwards, defending players were prohibited from impeding or grabbing players who set screens. The Defensive Three second rule was introduced in 2001. As per this rule, defenders waiting in the lane away from the offensive players to assist them were eliminated.
Effect of rules
These rules opened up the game. In the 1997-98 season, the scoring average was 95.6 points per game and this raised to 100 per game in the 2008-09 season. In these two seasons, field goal percentage was enhanced from 45 to 45.9 percent.
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