While its image continues to take blows off the court, the NBA is cleaning up its image on the court as the Association announced its new, stricter rules for technical fouls on Friday.
Referees are now told to make technical calls on actions such as aggressive gestures such as air punches, demonstrative disagreement and questioning a call excessively.
Ron Johnson, the NBA's senior vice president of referee operations, said that “heat of the moment” reactions and players showing frustration with themselves will not be penalized.
"We don't want our players looking like they're complaining about calls on the court because it makes them look like complainers," Johnson said.
The NBA implemented similar rules in 2006, but they were abandoned after the 2006-07 season. Johnson said that audience research showed that fans wanted stricter technical foul rules enforced.
The number of technical fouls is sure to increase while the players get used to not voicing their displeasure. Celtics center Kendrick Perkins was tied at 15 with Dwight Howard for the most technical fouls last season. Perkins will have a few months on the injured list before he has to worry about racking up technical fouls.
Rasheed Wallace, the record-holder for most technical fouls in a season, must be thankful he retired.
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