Playing NBA Jam for the Super Nintendo is a favorite past time of mine. Both offense and defense contain simple strategies to ensure a win. If your on offense you either shoot 3-pointers or dunk and on defense you just hack away, repeatedly trying to foul whoever has the ball. Every once in awhile you try to go for the Dwight Howard block but usually just get goaltending called. Currently the NBA playoffs are happening and this same defensive tactic of heavy fouling is being used against the superstars of the league. In hopes of tiring out the other team’s MVP player, whether it is Dwight Howard, Derrick Rose, or Chris Paul, the opposing teams are doing anything possible to stop those three from having an impact.
Dwight Howard was recently reported to be so tired after game 2 that he was 90 minutes late to his post game interview due to his prolong ice bath. This was due to the double and triple teams that he has to deal with. The Los Angeles Lakers decided to put Kobe Bryant on Chris Paul and prevent another 33-point, 14-assist game. Kobe’s aggressive body contact shut down Chris Paul leaving him with only 20-points and 9-assists. Anyone watching the game could see the sparks fly as these players did everything they could to bump, irk, and aggravate the other.
The NBA is not taking lightly to this hawkish behavior and has increased the number and level of fouls it hands out. Recently, the NBA upgraded a foul that Jeff Foster committed on Derrick rose to a level 1 flagrant foul (two level 1 flagrant fouls results in a suspension). Derrick Rose was very displeased after the foul since Foster wrecked him with his body and elbows. Almost resulting in a fight, the tempers calmed down afterwards. Foster responded after the game saying, [Rose] reacted. It’s the playoffs. I’m sure he is going to get hit plenty of times.” Rose shrugged it off but that’s what makes the playoffs so exciting. Two teams going head to head, do or die, win or go home. Ill feelings are taken out on the court and hopefully not too many fights break out. In the end, the most driven, emotionally controlled team wins.