Indiana coach Frank Vogel knows his team will face a huge challenge in Miami in the Eastern Conference semifinals, but believes the talents in South Beach include an inordinate amount of flopping. A hatred toward flopping, seemingly even more pronounced than usual, has become the campaign issue du jour of the NBA postseason. Will it mean the win or loss of a series? Likely not. Is it the easiest thing to work up hate about? Yes.
“They are the biggest flopping team in the NBA,” Vogel said. “It’ll be very interesting to see how the referees officiate the series and how much flopping they reward.”
The Heat, who eliminated the New York Knicks on Wednesday, were fourth in the league in points allowed and fifth in the league in field goal percentage defense during the regular season. They like to swarm to the ball when it’s in the paint.
“Every drive to the basket, they have guys not making a play on the ball,” Vogel said, “but sliding in front of drivers. Oftentimes they’re falling down even before contact is even being made. It’ll be interesting to see how the series is officiated.”
So Vogel invoked the flopping card on Miami after meeting with reporters on Thursday, seeming to believe it will be a modern-day Scarlet Letter pinned on the Heat’s legacy. I absolutely understand why Vogel is putting the spotlight on Miami to force pressure on the favorites — you know the next 24 hours of Heat media sessions included several questions asking for responses, and I’m sure refs will watch a bit closer. I just don’t get why it has to be about flopping. 1) I doubt if any Heat players care, even if they were consistently egregious floppers, to be known as such (even Chris Bosh, perpetrator of one of the worst flops EVER). 2) Isn’t it widely known that everyone flops in the NBA, just to varying degrees of success? Flops get called because charges have taken over the inside game, in my opinion, by too much. But until the offseason, when possibly NBA Director of Officials Donnie Vaden will introduce tweaks, this is what we live in. And take note of what Vogel didn’t say: All he said was the Heat were the worst, not that the Pacers never do.
This video isn’t to say, “See Frank, you do it to!” but it’s one of my underrated flop gems of the season. It’s from the preseason of Matt Rogers.
If you really want to see classic flops, check out our top-20 worst flops ever.
What do you think?
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