There is one thing in sports I can’t stand above anything else. It’s not players leaving the playing surface without shaking hands. It’s not the lack of instant replay in baseball. It’s not even the authoritarian rule Rodger Goodell has implemented over the NFL. Flopping in the NBA really punches my angry buttons and it’s going to ruin the sport if it’s not dealt with soon.
There is a simple solution to this far-reaching problem; Everyone does it. It’s become a coach-able skill. It’s become an important part of winning game-plans. But it’s not defense, and it’s not how this game is supposed to be played.
The easiest, simplest and fairest way to get rid of flopping, at least on the defensive side of things, is to get rid of charges inside the painted area entirely. Do not reward a player for running in front of his opponent, standing straight up and then flying backwards like he just pulled the pin out of a grenade with his foot.
Call every single charge a block. If you penalize players for trying to take a charge, they won’t do it, and they won’t be able to flop. Instead, they’ll remember to do things like beat their man to the spot, go straight up for a blocked shot, or rotate to help out their teammates.
Outside the paint offensive fouls should still be called. If a player has good, one-on-one defensive position, and his opponent initiates contact, it should result in an offensive foul. Illegal screens should still exist, too (I’m looking at you, KG).
It’ll be impossible to get rid of flopping from the offensive side of things, and players will still act like they were hit by a truck in battles for loose balls, but by getting rid of charges inside the paint, the NBA would improve the sport and get rid of almost all flopping that takes place on defense.