Remember when you used to see that cold and emotionless “Breaking News” announcement on TV? You’d say “Whoa, this isn’t good, but for the life of me, I gotta see it.” Now, CNN just has a show called Breaking News,where nothing is actually happening, nor is news breaking.
The same used to apply to flagrant fouls in the NBA. They were reserved for the most felonious NBA assaults, like JJ Reddick getting a tattoo sleeve at 31, but like “Breaking News” they’re pedestrian.
During last night’s Knicks versus Celtics game, New York’s Carmelo Anthony was issued a flagrant foul for an elbow turn while eyeing up a potential jump shot. His elbow hit Boston’s Jae Crowder as he crumpled to the floor. A foul? Yes. But, there wasn’t an ounce of malice.
However, that doesn’t matter.
The hit summoned all the referees to cease play and start the eventual jog that becomes a huddle to the scorers table and stare at the replay over and over again.
Back and to the left. Back and to the left.
Melo was issued a flagrant foul, when years ago it most likely would have been deemed a touch foul that not a soul would have blushed at. Don’t believe me? Go jog over and huddle up at YouTube.
Later in the game Celtics Amir Johnson was issued a flagrant foul for his folly while guarding Carmelo Anthony. Just a simple foul with Johnson going for the ball and Melo fell down. That’s it.
Last night’s display was so bad, most players were in shock as was the aforementioned Breen, who is normally an announcer who sides with the on-floor law of the league.
I don’t want to trot out the same boring narrative that the league is “soft” and not like it used to be, but the league is soft and not like it used to be.
So, I’m not really sure what these guys are even looking at. There is no breaking news.
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