Culture of Hoops

The Starting 5: All-NBA Floppers Team

With the NBA’s new “flop rules” officially taking effect this upcoming season, the following five players might feel their wallets getting lighter (although they’ll still be very, very heavy). My Baller Mind Frame colleague, Marcus Middleton goes a little more in depth with his opinion, but let’s take a look at the All-NBA Floppers Team.

PG: Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers

What’s great about Paul’s flopping? He gets it done on both ends of the floor. A true two-way flopper. A flip-flopper if you will. Whether taking flight while trying to turn a corner, or crashing into a ballhandler, Chris Paul gets the whistle when he hits the hardwood.

SG: Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat

Suffice it to say, the acting talent at shooting guard in the NBA is DEEP. For the past decade, the go-to flopper at the two has been Manu Ginobili. Last season, James Harden showed his readiness to lay claim to the crown. But neither could pull off Wade’s 2006 Finals tour de force, crumbling at every opportunity like a bad idea on loose leaf paper. (More videos from the same series here and here.)

SF: Paul Pierce, Boston Celtics

There were a few other small forward candidates here, including one whom some might call the “King” of flopping, but what makes Pierce’s dramatizations so great is their innocence amid big spots. Just dribbling cross-court with the basketball? Nope. Hitting the deck. Just shooting an elbow jumper? Nope. Double clutching and yelling “Hey!”

PF: Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers

Only two NBA campaigns under his belt and Blake’s a seasoned flopper. How many NBA players can draw fouls on themselves?

C: Reggie Evans, Brooklyn Nets

When a player has only one true basketball skill, he’d better be able to grab an unmerited call if he gets the chance. What’s most impressive is Evans’s off-the-ball flailing, on which he relies heavily, considering he never possesses the ball longer than it takes to gather a rebound and hand the ball to anyone else. I’m sort of disappointed in the lack of acting depth at center in the league today, considering perhaps the league’s most celebrated (or denigrated) flopper ever, Vlade Divac, was a true five. Evans and the other candidate — Anderson Varejao — aren’t even exclusively centers. It seems they also like to flip-flop positions.

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