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Why NBA is frustrated with Mavs’ refusal to comply with bench decorum rules

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For the third time this NBA playoff season, the Dallas Mavericks were fined for the same offense: violating the league’s rules on bench decorum.

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The league announced a third penalty on Sunday. as a result of Mavs bench action against Golden State in Game 2 the Western Conference Finals on Friday.

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Fines have doubled from $25,000 to $50,000 and are now $100,000 for the latest violation.

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“On several occasions, several players and a member of the coaching staff stood for extended periods in the Mavericks’ bench area, walked away from the team bench, and were on or tampered with the playing court,” the league said in a statement. The announcement was made in a statement endorsed by NBA President of League Operations Byron Spruell.

Mavericks players watch from the bench for the second half of Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals against Golden State on Friday.
Mavericks players watch from the bench for the second half of Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals against Golden State on Friday.

The tone of this statement doesn’t reflect the Mavericks’ dissatisfaction with the league. The league believes that the behavior of the Mavs bench affects the safety of the players, their competitiveness and the attention of the fans.

League rules state that players during play must remain in their places while the ball is in play, unless they spontaneously react to a prominent play or go to the scorer’s table to check play; players not participating in the game may not remain on the bench or away from them during game action; and players on the bench are prohibited from unsportingly distracting opponents during a game.

The last point, an unsportsmanlike distraction during game action, came into play in Game 2 when Steph Curry, while the Warriors were wearing white uniforms, threw the ball to Theo Pinson, who was out of uniform but wearing a white jersey with his left hand is raised. Curry clearly thought he was a Warriors teammate.

This game particularly angered league officials.

The league doesn’t mind players standing, especially after a big game, but it doesn’t want players to stand for most of the game, especially if the fans behind them can’t see.

Because these bench propriety issues were usually resolved following league intervention, technical fouls were not used as a deterrent, and the league has no plans to start issuing technical fouls during the conference finals.

However, the topic will be discussed during the offseason and the league will explore ways to address the issue of bench propriety during live games, a person familiar with the situation told USA TODAY Sports. The man asked for anonymity because he is not authorized to speak publicly on the subject.

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Before the NBA issued its first fine to Dallas, it warned the Mavericks to stop this behavior and abide by the rules regarding bench decorum.

The Mavs refused to comply, adding to the league’s frustration. Similar violations happened before, but the issues were eliminated.

Dallas belongs to Mark Cuban, who is no stranger to penalties from the league, and he also sits on the bench, sometimes standing and cheering for the players. During his tenure as owner, he was fined more than $3 million, which does not include an actual $10 million fine that was donated to organizations that promote women to leadership positions and combat domestic violence following an investigation into workplace culture Mavs. .

Game 3 will take place Sunday in Dallas, and Cuban doesn’t seem to be swayed by the league’s fine. He tweeted a video of Nets players celebrating a game on the bench and retweeted a video of Golden State’s Draymond Green complaining to game officials about a call with a Cuban caption: “Our bench is out of control! »

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: NBA Frustration With Mavs Bench Players Grows Along With Penalties


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