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Ask Bernie: Hand part of the ball, over backboard and more

By NBA.com
Posted Dec 30 2010 5:13PM

I have been having an argument with a good friend of mine for a couple of years now. I was up in the air for a slam dunk with my right hand and he made a block from behind me. I think it's a foul, but he doesn't agree. Can you please help?
-okwudili

If you are in the act of dunking, and he goes up from behind you, and there's contact from the wrist down (the arm) or excessive body contact, then it's probably a foul. If he hits the ball or your hand (which is considered part of the ball when in contact with the ball), then it's not a foul.

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A person grabs a rebound and lands in bounds but because of this his momentum is causing him to fall out of bounds. Before he steps out he drops the ball in bounds. He then goes out of bounds, comes back in and gets both feet in bounds before he grabs the ball again. Is this legal or would the ball go to the other team?
-Jeff

This is a legal play, as long as he re-establishes himself inbounds with both feet legally touching the playing court before touching the ball. If he does not reestablish himself inbounds, then he may not legally be the first one to touch the ball.

If player A1 shot an airball and the same player A1 retrieves the ball without other players touching the ball first, is this considered a traveling violation? The argument is that even though the player shot an airball, it is still a shot attempt.
-Bobby

Yes, this scenario would be a traveling violation. The ball must hit the backboard and/or rim, or an opponent before the shooting player can be the first to touch the missed shot. If the shooting player is the first to touch an airball, then it is a traveling violation.

If a player shoots the ball, the ball hits the rim, and then bounces over the edge of the backboard, and another player grabs it before going out of bounds, is the ball a live ball?
-Frank

Yes, if the ball goes over the corner as I think you are describing, this is still in play. The ball is considered out of bounds once it passes directly behind the backboard. If the ball bounces over the corner and never passes directly behind the backboard, then it's a live ball..

How are kicked balls defined? If a player throws a pass and it hits a defensive player's leg, is it a violation?
-Frank

A kicked ball violation occurs when a defender makes a motion with his foot/leg as in a kick. If a ball is passed and hits the defender's leg/foot, that does not necessarily mean a kicked ball violation has occurred

I play in a small league. Many of the games I play in my feet get stepped on by the player with the ball or by a player cutting, I keep wanting to call a foul or something because I am unable to move my feet to continue guarding by no fault of my own. Is there a penalty for a player stepping on another player's foot if it prevents them from moving? Does it matter?
-Nathan

If you are the defender and your foot is (accidentally) stepped on, it is considered incidental contact and there is no foul.

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