James Harden Talks NBA Rule Change That Has Limited His Free Throws

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After a tough loss to the Charlotte Hornets a few days ago, Harden opened up about being the poster boy of the new rule change about initiating contact in order to draw a foul.

Referees have been instructed to not call fouls drawn by unnatural motions, such as an offensive player leaning or jumping into contact.

In four games this season, Harden is averaging just three free-throw attempts per game. Harden averaged double-digit free-throw attempts per game from 2018-2020. That’s a signficant difference.

James spoke about the rule change:

“I’m not the type to complain about it. I asked every official if they see a foul just call a foul,” Harden said. “Sometimes I feel like coming into a game it’s already predetermined. I already have that stigma of getting foul calls – A foul is a foul no matter what league it is.”


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Harden’s minutes in the first quarter also seem to be frustrating him. Harden appeared to be unhappy after being subbed out sooner than he wanted on during Tuesday’s game against the Wizards.

Harden did average over 35 minutes in every season since 2012. So far this year, he’s only averaging 33.

Harden needs to figure out how to put up more points  outside of the foul line.


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