The NBA is not wasting any time making examples out of certain players and teams to uphold a few of its new rules that it has implemented this season.
The Boston Celtics were the first team to be issued a delay-of-game warning after its players spent more than 90 seconds going through their pre-game rituals in a preseason game against the New York Knicks in Hartford, Conn. earlier in October, according to Chris Forsberg of ESPNBoston.com.
According to the report, teams are notified when they have 30 seconds remaining for their pre-game rituals before they are expected to tip-off:
“There’s a 90-second countdown, it is placed on the clock,” NBA spokesman Tim Frank said. “At 30 seconds, there’s a warning horn and alert by the refs. At the end, teams need to be ready to tip off or face a delay-of-game warning.”
After two delays-of-game, a team is issued a technical foul.
The Sacramento Kings were the latest team to receive the warning as the team was notified by officials prior to its game against the Portland Trailblazers that they had been issued a delay-of-game warning, according to a report Thursday morning from SBNation:
Gary Gerould on the radio broadcast mentioned during the first timeout that the rule had been explained to media row and that the official had indicated he did assess Sacramento a delay of game warning for a too-long handshake period.
Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder chimed in with his own feelings about the new policy in a report from The Oklahoman:
“I personally don’t like it,” Durant said of the 90-second rule. “Every player in this league has routines they do with their teammates, rituals they do before the game and before they walk on the floor. The fans like it. The fans enjoy it. You see the fans mimicking the guys who do their stuff before the game. To cut that down really don’t make no sense. Why would you do it? I really don’t agree with it, but I don’t make the rules.”
The NBA has also made it a point to stress its new “anti-flopping” policy and has reportedly already issued a warning to Jarrett Jack of the Golden State Warriors.