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NBA

NBA Coach Challenge: How many are there and how do they work?

When the next NBA season tips off, it may well be that we see a whole lot more frictions between coaches and referees as a result of a new rule in the league.

Update:
When the next NBA season tips off, it may well be that we see a whole lot more frictions between coaches and referees as a result of a new rule in the league.
CHRIS CODUTOAFP

With an already increased focus on referees and the calls they make, it will be interesting to see how the league’s proposed rule change affects the frequency with which coaches challenge the decisions made by officials during games.

NBA’s new rule will see coaches keep their challenge

According to recent reports, there is one specific proposed change to the NBA’s rules that will “most likely” be implemented in the upcoming season. Indeed, said change will allow coaches to maintain their challenge to the referee if their initial challenge is successful. Needless to say, the idea could have a significant effect on the quantity of stoppages that we see in games in the league.

To be clear, the league implemented the “coach’s challenge” in the 2019-20 season. In practice, the amendment allows for head coaches to challenge one call made by the officials every game (no-calls cannot be challenged). Once a challenge has been made, officials are then required to go to the instant replay cameras to assess whether their call was correct.

The coach’s challenge has been well received

To be honest, the alteration to the rules where challenges are concerned has been a big success for the league. With growing scrutiny of officials from players, coaches and fans alike, the notion of creating greater accuracy has definitely helped. Consider for a moment what coaches faced prior to the new rule’s implementation. Even if the coach faced a blatantly bad call in the first quarter, he had to weigh the pros and cons of using a challenge that early in the game, even if he knew full well that he could win. As you can imagine, the new rule brings an end to that possibility.

What can we expect from the NBA’s new coach challenge rule

Simply put, more of the same. We’ve already seen several games determined on the basis of challenges from coaches. With that in mind, it’s reasonable to believe that the NBA’s new stance on the situation will simply increase the frequency with which that happens. Whatever the case, one thing is assured: The 2023-24 NBA season is going to be different to what we’ve seen before. With coaches being able to challenge personal fouls called against their team, out-of-bounds calls and even goaltending, expect a number of coaches to begin taking officials to task more often.