Get ready this season to witness a new rule in the NBA which may as well cause mayhem. A rule that is, surprisingly, named after an NBA player who is even not an All-Star, the Theo Pinson Rule. And, the rule is in full effect for the past couple of days. And NBA is serious about it.
The Theo Pinson rule is about bench decorum and discipline during a game. NBA is taking the bench celebration seriously and vows to cut down the bench celebration time this season. Bench celebration is part and parcel of basketball games. It almost always occurs when a spectacular play comes into action and the team scores points, and the bench erupts in celebration standing, jumping, or even getting to the edge of the court. And sometimes, the benched players would stand up the entire time to watch and cheer. This last part is where the NBA rule is getting strict and wants to discourage via point of emphasis.
Monty McCutchen’s Explanation of the Theo Pinson Rule
See below for Part 3 of the 2022-23 Points of Education video (narrated by SVP, Head of Referee Development and Training Monty McCutchen), which provides examples and guidance regarding Bench Conduct and Respect For The Game: pic.twitter.com/i98dHOjuW6
— NBA Official (@NBAOfficial) September 26, 2022
“Players who are not in the game are not permitted to stand on the playing court at any time, for any reason.”
And if a violation occurs, then the bench will be handed a warning, and a second violation will result in a technical foul. The point is to cut out any elements of distraction.
This new rule comes into play after Maverick’s bench behavior in the last season. And the main culprit was Theo Pinson. Theo Pinson cheered for his team wearing street clothes and the color of his shirt matched the color of the GSW jersey. He even managed to con Steph Curry into passing him. His actions led the referees awkwardly to ask him to change his shirt which he refused.
USA Today’s Jeff Zilgitt explains further, “League rules state players during a game must remain seated while the ball is in play, except to react spontaneously to a notable play or report to the scorer’s table to check into the game; players not in the game may not remain standing at or away from team’s bench during game action, and bench players are prohibited from distracting opponents in an unsportsmanlike manner during game action.”
The rules were in place before, but their implementation wasn’t that much. However, now it seems that NBA is serious about it and players need to be careful about it this season.
— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) October 6, 2022