NBA: Off-court referees to decide certain replay outcomes, move takes effect in new season

"Flow of game is crucial to basketball so a quicker result will help our players and coaches return to action faster." Kiki VanDeWeghe, NBA executive vice-president of basketball operations, said in a statement.
"Flow of game is crucial to basketball so a quicker result will help our players and coaches return to action faster." Kiki VanDeWeghe, NBA executive vice-president of basketball operations, said in a statement.PHOTO: AFP

(REUTERS) - Decisions on whether a shot is a two or three-point attempt will be made by off-court National Basketball Association referees, the league said on Wednesday. The move is one of several modifications to the instant-replay process.

Referees in the Replay Center will also issue rulings on end-of-quarter made field goals, out-of-bounds calls, goal-tending and potential shot-clock violations, beginning with the 2015-16 season.

"Many instances in our 15 instant-replay triggers are very straightforward and do not need the involvement of the on-court game officials to accurately determine the result," Kiki VanDeWeghe, NBA executive vice-president of basketball operations, said in a statement.

"Flow of game is crucial to basketball so a quicker result will help our players and coaches return to action faster."

However, all replay reviews will continue to be triggered by the three on-court referees, the NBA said after modifications to the instant-replay process were approved by the league's board of governors.

On-court referees will decide on flagrant and clear-path fouls, player altercations and restricted-area calls while the current standard for overturning a call made on the floor will remain for all instant-replay reviews.

A call is overturned only if there is "clear and conclusive" visual evidence for doing so, the NBA said.

During reviews in which the Replay Center has final jurisdiction, only the crew chief will go to the scorer's table to hear the decision and watch the definitive angle on video.

The Replay Center will be staffed each game day by at least one current league referee and as many as four, depending on the schedule of NBA games.