NBA tweaks timeout rules to pace game flow


To address the two long-time issues of timeouts and the length of halftime/downtime during the game, NBA has finally removed the “full and “20-second” timeouts, replaced by the “team” timeout on Wednesday by league’s Board of Governors.

The new timeout format that was unanimously approved by league’s Broad of Governors pertains to last three minutes of regulation. Now team will be limited to two “team” timeouts in the last minutes, instead of each team having a maximum of three timeouts in the last two minutes. This will help to effectively resume the play after halftime.

Clearly, now each time will be given a total of seven “team” timeouts per game, 75 seconds each. Meaning, the total number of timeouts per game has reduced from 18 to 14.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said

“We’re pretty happy with the length of the game,”

“We were more focused here on the pace and flow of the game. What we heard from our fans, what we heard from many of our teams, was that the end of the games in particular were too choppy. And I think since I was a kid, that was an issue people were talking about, the last two minutes of a game.”

The average duration of an NBA regular season has reduced from 2 hours 23 minutes to 2.15 minutes approximately.

Byron Spruell, NBA President of League Operations said –   

“These changes will help us fulfil our goal of improving game flow and pace of play,”

“Fewer stoppages and less time without action, especially at the end of a game, will further enhance the viewing experience for our fans.” He added.

New regulations will be effective from next regular season of NBA and teams will have to face penalties if they are not ready to play immediately after the timeout ends.

A BS Political Science from the Saint Louis University, Baguio City. Norvelyn shares her passion in writing Philippine Sports.