The NBA made a significant rule change during the offseason that disallowed players from leaning into defenders and relying on non-basketball moves to draw foul calls. Some players have been significantly impacted by the change and Nets guard James Harden, who has made a living by drawing fouls, addressed the changes.
The Brooklyn star has struggled to start the season and was asked after his team's 111–95 loss to the Hornets if he felt like the "poster boy" for the NBA's new rule change to which he replied "for sure."
"It's still basketball at the end of the day," Harden said. "No matter how much of a big deal we try to make it a foul is a foul. It's pretty simple."
Harden went on to say the change was "not even rules, just certain people," and referred to some interactions as "clear fouls." Harden has led the NBA in free throw attempts six times since 2013. In two games this season, he's attempted eight free throws in total and scored 20 points in both contests.
Nets coach Steve Nash referred to Harden as the "poster boy" for the rule change and veteran guard continued to downplay the situation while also addressing NBA referees.
"I'm not the type to complain about it," Harden said. "I just ask every official [if] they see a foul just call a foul. Sometimes I feel like coming into a game it's already pre-determined or I already have that stigma of getting foul calls but, I just ask for officials to just call what they see."
Harden was adamant on not changing his style of play because of the rule change either.
"A foul is a foul no matter what league it is," he said.
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