22 May 2014

How Is This Not Traveling?

All Posts 46 Comments

I realize there are more important things to argue about, but people are citing this as the danger of early celebration. How is that guy not traveling? He clearly takes three full steps while carrying the ball.

46 Responses to “How Is This Not Traveling?”

  1. Dan says:

    I’d need to see it in slo-mo, but it looked like two steps to me. He did a little stutter step right before he got the ball back, or at least it looked that way to me, but only took two after he caught the ball.

    • Bob Murphy says:

      Which is still 100% more than the legally permissible limit, but better than three steps–and I still say he took three.

      • Dan says:

        I don’t know what the rules are for high school, but the NBA changed theirs awhile back, and had allowed two steps after the dribble for my entire life.


      • Somebody says:


        News to me.

        • somebody says:

          Double wait a minute. This was a street ball game? Bob, you REALLY need to expand your horizons.

          You get at least six steps in a street ball game.

          • Andrew' says:

            Only if you have a flashy finish, not a layup.

  2. Dan (DD5) says:

    It’s 3 full steps. Maybe (but not sure) another half step when he catches the ball, so it might even be 4. No way 2 steps or even 2.5. You can almost always tell when it’s traveling without literally counting steps. In this case, there is doubt. If you watch basketball a lot, or better yet if you play it, you can easily see it without counting. And referees are suppose to be especially trained at it. A good referee doesn’t look at the feet and count.

    • Dan says:

      Well, I’ve been watching basketball since I was 5 years old, I played it from that age, as well (I used to be able to dunk when I was 17-25 years old), and I’m not sure it was traveling. He took four steps from the time the ball was deflected, but, to me, it looked like he only took two from the time he collected the ball. I wouldn’t have called it traveling.

      • Bob Murphy says:

        Dan I’m sure you are better at b-ball than me now, and when we were both in our primes. But I don’t know how you can say this isn’t traveling. As Dan (DD5) says, it’s arguably 4 steps (though that’s a stretch, I grant you).

        Anyway, the most annoying guy in this video is the one who had nothing to do with the play but is doing 6-shooters at the guy on the ground.

        • Dan says:

          I’d need to see it in slo-mo. When I pause it from the time he catches the ball he takes two steps from there, but it’s hard to pause it at exactly that moment so I could be missing a step. Either way, I think it was close, and I wouldn’t think it was a terrible call to call it traveling, but I wouldn’t have if I was he ref.

          And the dunk isn’t even that impressive. It’s like they’ve never seen a person get ted dunked on before. They should go back and watch Pippen dunk on Ewing.

          • Dan says:

            He-Ref, the most powerful ref in the universe.

          • Keshav Srinivasan says:

            You can watch it in slow motion here:
            Adjust the sliders and then click the Slow Motion button.

            • Dan says:

              Ok, with the slo-mo, I can see the third step. So, I retract my claim.

              • Bob Murphy says:

                You guys aren’t going to believe this, but with slo-mo I now think it looks like two steps! (I’m being serious.)

              • Bob Murphy says:

                Oh wait, never mind, the pop-up menu was blocking his foot. Now I clearly see three steps.

  3. Ben B says:

    Jim Ross is the man.

  4. andrew' says:

    It is also a charge but this stuff is supposed to be basketball-ish performance art.

    • gienon says:

      It’s definitely not a charge. The defender didn’t establish a defensive position.

      However, if the player doing the dribbling who eventually sets up the alley-oop is Hot Sauce (I think that’s him) then it’s not high school basketball but probably some streetball-ish kind of exhibition, similar to the AND1 games. Rules are very loosened there.

      In NBA that would be a travel, as he took 3 steps. I’m not even sure if it wouldn’t be a travel as soon as he caught the ball that he himself threw up in the air earlier.

      • andrew' says:

        You can’t just jump on top of someone.

        Even if someone travelled to dish you the ball.

        Had he done. A layup and plowed into someone it would be more obvious. Being out of control but in the air is not an exemption.

        Unless it is and1.

        • Dan says:

          You can jump on a guy that isn’t set and just jumps underneath you. If anything, it would’ve been a blocking foul. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=2SYmae9FhkQ

          • Andrew' says:

            Your video and the one above are not the same situations.

            Undercutting would certainly be a foul. In fact, it should be an immediate ejection, in my opinion.

            But the video you link is just a defender contesting a shot in the typical way.

            • Andrew' says:

              Again, I’m fascinated that I have to argue this kind of stuff.

              I guess it is just “someone is wrong on the internet” syndrome.

              • Dan says:

                I just like talking sports, and people have been arguing about officiating long before the Internet came around.

              • Andrew' says:

                Seriously, at best this is a no-call because it’s a jump ball.

              • Andrew' says:

                I’m not talking about arguing calls or even rules. I’m talking about arguing what both our eyes can see and in frame-by-frame slow motion!

                How the hell can we discuss monetary policy!?!

              • Dan says:

                Well, if it makes you feel better, once I saw the play in slo-mo I reversed my position. Although, I still say you are clearly wrong on thinking that is a charge.

            • Dan says:

              OK, watch Deandre Jordan dunk on Brandon Knight. Same type of situation, Brandon Knight jumps up sideways trying to get the ball and Jordan comes down the lane to smash it in his face. Call: blocking foul. http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=KdDmwOk5wVI&feature=kp

              • Bob Murphy says:

                I think you guys should talk about economic calculation.

              • Dan says:

                Hey, check your privilege.

              • Andrew' says:

                Well, first, that is probably a bad call. It is basically a loose ball that is up for grabs.

                Second, NBA has the little half circle to cover the refs from doing their jobs and taking away the punch bowl of the circus dunks because the rules and refs were making the horrible charge floppers dangerous.

                Third, it’s still not the exact same situation. The And1 Mix video defender thinks he’s trying to get a rebound and the guy goes over the back.

              • Andrew' says:

                The NBA needs to go ahead and get rid of that little half circle and expand the Defense-free zone to the entire court just like And1 has done.

              • Andrew' says:

                We’ve established this is And1.

                That means everything that happens in the video is WRONG!

                I think they have a hypeman instead of refs!

              • Andrew' says:

                One of the funny things about basketball is if someone ends up on the ground, the refs have to make a call.

                They aren’t necessarily going to make a good call, just any call.

                In the NBA, they know which side their bread is buttered on.

              • Dan says:

                I’m not one of those guys who thinks the refs do a bad job. They have an incredibly difficult job, and get the call right the vast majority of the time.

  5. Raja says:

    That’s more than two I say.

  6. Gamble says:

    Could be 2 or 3, need slow mo to really tell…

  7. Andrew' says:

    For some time I’ve been fascinated how people can hear stories about things like Trayvon Martin and get it completely wrong. Then I found that people can SEE something and not be on the same page.

    Is it because we believe and even see what we want? It’s really weird. Thus, it is ridiculous to dissect something like ths, but what could be more important than being able to dissect a reality in effort to learn to understand broader reality? And that is before we even interpret the law/rules!

    0.03 Throws ball, for the sake of argument, gets tipped in the air by defender, but in reality probably a self-pass
    0.03 right foot down, catches ball
    0.04 with full control, left foot goes down (steps 0 or 1)
    0.04 Right foot goes down (steps 1 or 2)
    0.04 Left foot down again (steps 2 or 3)
    0.05 leaps off left foot (total steps 2 or 3)

    Is there a basketball rules expert in the house? Do you even get two steps if you didn’t dribble into them? He wasn’t really moving before he caught the ball?

    Then there is the issue of the posterized defender minding his own business thinking he’s going up for a rebound and the alley-ooper lands on him, essentially going over the back. Since we are used to seeing poorly called basketball, this extreme version is confusing.

  8. knoxharrington says:

    This looks like an “And 1” type playground game – they don’t call travels, double dribble, etc. because it is about showing off the dunks as exemplified in this video. No way is this a regulation game. Bob is right – the guy travels.

  9. Koen says:

    I’ve long since given up on calling people on travelling violations during games.Truly, the following happens with some regularity: I see somebody take like 4 steps to the basket, ball in hand, and nobody says a thing, and then when I meekly aks ‘Hey, but wasn’t that travelling?’ nobody, on either team, seems to agree or even understand how I could possibly think that it was.

    Even though the guy just took like 4 steps.

    I must just be misseeing something, some percepual-cognitive failure on my part, but it totally doesn’t *feel* as if the error is mine.

    On the other hand, what may be happening is that they’re doing this sort of social psychology experiment on me. You know, where you get a very simple question or visual exercise or something and you give the right answer, but then you’re told or find out that everybody else in the group gave a different answer. The goal of the experiment is to see whether this will cause you to doubt yourself and change your mind, even though up until that point there was no way you could have seriously entertained the thought you were wrong about what you just saw.

  10. Koen says:

    The guy in the video took 3 steps btw.

    • Andrew' says:

      Another problem is it is an ugly 3 steps because his momentum starts with him moving backwards.

      • Andrew' says:

        If you were flat-footed and caught the ball, you wouldn’t be able to take 2 steps from a dead stop without being called.

  11. Andrew' says:

    Hey Bob, the rulebook is a living, breathing document!

  12. Dan (DD5) says:

    Notice the referee facing us behind the backboard slightly to the right of it. He has a clear view the play. Note his extremely professional reaction after that play.

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