NBA’s 65-game rule: what exactly is it?

The rules in the NBA have undergone numerous changes over the years, aimed at ensuring fairness and improving the overall experience for everyone involved. These changes have addressed various aspects of the game, from altering rules for players like Michael Jordan to implementing measures to counter strategies like the infamous “Hack-a-Shaq” technique used against Shaquille O’Neal.

One notable rule implemented in the current NBA season is the NBA’s 65-game rule. This rule has a direct impact on major awards, including the regular season MV, and has already garnered attention and discussion within the basketball community.

What is NBA’s 65-game rule?

Earlier teams used to rest fit players taking advantage of the player resting policy. To put an end to it, NBA came up with the 65-game rule policy.

To qualify for the end of the season awards there are certain rules that needs to be followed. The 65-game rule stipulates that a player must participate for a minimum of 20 minutes in at least 65 regular-season games to be eligible for end-of-season awards.

However, if a player experiences a season-ending injury but has played in at least 62 games, the consideration shifts to whether they participated in at least 85% of the regular-season games played by their team before sustaining the injury.

With such rules enforced, the stakes couldn’t be higher as the Regular season MVP award, Defensive Player of the Year, Most Improved Player, the All-NBA teams and the All-Defensive teams depend on this rule.

Draymond Green rips into NBA’s “bullsh*t” rule

A player who’s already out of the running for the MVP due to missing playtime in more than 20 games is Draymond Green. He strongly criticized the rule on his podcast, calling it “bullsh*t.”

Green expressed concerns about how the rule compelled Joel Embiid to play through an injury, potentially risking something more severe. He emphasized the impact, saying, “Now we got one of the premier faces of this league possibly hurt because he’s forcing it.”

Despite smash mouth performance in 76ers colors, even Joel Embiid could not escape from getting into trouble because of this new rule. The Cameroonian star is the last year’s MVP winner and is amongst the favorite for this season as well averaging 35.3 points, 11.3 rebounds and 5.7 assists per contest so far.

However, he missed two games due to a knee injury, sparking questions. His compelled return after the Nuggets game worked against him. In a recent match against the Golden State Warriors, Embiid visibly struggled with his injury which got worse when Jonathan Kuminga landed on his knee, leaving him in visible discomfort. With this recent injury, he may miss out on his chance to win the individual award this season.

It is worth noting that Draymond Green once lost Defensive Player of the Year Award to Kawhi Leonard who played 51 games when the 65-game rule was not in place. Embiid might not be as lucky as Leonard this season as Sixers will play against Jazz next without him, which will make it his 13th missed game of the season.

SZ Desk

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