Improperly called intentional foul

By Dennis Morris

This play occurred in the closing seconds of a very close game. Obviously the defender is desperately attempting to steal the ball. An “intentional foul” was called. There does not appear to be any elements of an “intentional foul” present in this play. Clearly the defender is going for the ball in a basketball type play. It is not a hard foul. The end of the play is theatrics by the dribbler. This is a good example of an aggressive defensive play that is certainly a personal foul but does not rise to the level of an intentional foul. Unfortunately, a technical foul follows and now the focus of this game has been entirely shifted to the officials.

Also note that this play comes from the center’s primary coverage area. The center official appears very slow to react to this action. While it is good that the Trail made the foul call, would have preferred that Center be involved. In addition, no doubt the Center saw this play and should have had a discussion with the Trail regarding the merits of an intentional foul.