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Roy Hibbert after seeing NBA’s letter on officiating verticality: ‘Got a league memo out for my a–‘

Apr 2, 2014, 9:36 PM EST

Roy Hibbert AP

Roy Hibbert has been among the best big men in the league when it comes to using the principle of verticality on defense, which is essentially jumping straight up in the air with arms extended as the offensive player drives to the basket and initiates contact.

It’s one of the areas the league is looking at cleaning up from an officiating standpoint before the postseason begins, and it was included in the memos that were made public in the ongoing effort by new commissioner Adam Silver to increase transparency where the referees are concerned.

Hibbert took to his Instagram page to show he took notice, while also taking some credit for the NBA’s added focus on this particular area of interest.

The caption Hibbert posted reads as follows:

“Got a league memo out for my ass. My “Str8 Ups” gotta be on point. I see a lot of bigs doing the str8 ups. I call em “Disciples”.

Hibbert’s not wrong, in that he’s the one who’s most prominently associated with using the rule to his advantage. But considering none of his plays were included in the video examples, he’s also not likely the one being targeted here considering how well he’s consistently executed it in the past.

  1. jasper36 - Apr 2, 2014 at 9:57 PM

    Considering how much he consistently fouls, and gets away with it. I think the player who displays verticality the best is Tyson Chandler.

    • apkyletexas - Apr 2, 2014 at 10:19 PM

      Sounds like the league is going after Miami. Birdman, James, Bosh, Haslem – these guys are doing it every time you try to go inside.

      • shanydawg - Apr 3, 2014 at 1:45 PM

        waaaa – waaaa – yup, it’s only 1 team, and it’s every player on it. meet me at the grassy knoll to discuss further.

    • therealhtj - Apr 3, 2014 at 10:55 AM

      The whole verticality rule is just an excuse for off-ball defenders to get away with fouls. In 99% of the cases the body may be vertical, but the arms most definitely are not. You either go for the block or charge, and guys like Hibbert want to have it both ways. Personally, I think if an off-ball defender makes any contact with a driving player in the paint, it should be a defensive foul barring off-arm clear-outs and blatant charges. I think they should extend the restricted area as well.

      Not really sure why the NBA is so hellbent on giving the defense another advantage, when it’s offense that sells tickets.

      • bougin89 - Apr 3, 2014 at 4:16 PM

        This comment is wrong in so many ways I don’t know where to start.

        “In 99% of the cases the body may be vertical, but the arms most definitely are not.”

        If the arms come down on the offensive player it’s a foul and is called. This doesn’t mean to say the arms have to literally be exactly straight up every time. The defensive player has a right to be on the court just as much as the offensive player does.

        “Personally, I think if an off-ball defender makes any contact with a driving player in the paint, it should be a defensive foul barring off-arm clear-outs and blatant charges. I think they should extend the restricted area as well. Not really sure why the NBA is so hellbent on giving the defense another advantage, when it’s offense that sells tickets.”

        Do you like the quality of basketball in the all star games? This is basically where your comment is going.

  2. eugenesaxe1 - Apr 2, 2014 at 10:21 PM

    He sure has been mouthy lately. Perhaps coming down with a case of bighead?

    • antistratfordian - Apr 3, 2014 at 3:42 AM

      He’s always been mouthy.

    • shanydawg - Apr 3, 2014 at 1:46 PM

      more like tight sphincter.

  3. nicofthenorthstar - Apr 2, 2014 at 10:32 PM

    The NBA basically doesn’t want guys playing D. How is MeBron supposed to break records if he actually has to face real defense?

    • kinggw - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:28 PM

      The verticality rule isn’t dealing with “real defense”. Guys like Hibbert have been taking advantage of a loophole in the rules.

      • bougin89 - Apr 3, 2014 at 9:19 AM

        What? You don’t think a defender should be able to jump straight up on defense when challenging a shot?

    • antistratfordian - Apr 3, 2014 at 3:46 AM

      Didn’t those Celtics teams he always faced have some of the best defenses of this era (maybe any era)? Thibs Bulls? The SVG Magic? The Pistons, when they were still good? Even Indiana the last few years.

      All he’s been doing is facing great defenses.

      • turkbox420 - Apr 3, 2014 at 11:17 AM

        Until Boston was about to take Miami out and the let DWade Dragon kick KG and called the and 1. Then did not call a foul for Rondo when he drove to the hoop, Lebron murdered him and it would have gave Boston a trip to the finals vs OKC rather than Miami. That was awful, I think Rondo had 44 points. That series should have never went to 7, Boston had in in 5-6 but it got extended. B.S.
        But until then Lebron had only beaten P.P. once, that was the year before when Dallas won and Boston were beat up. P.P. owned LBJ in Cleveland. lol

      • antistratfordian - Apr 3, 2014 at 2:21 PM

        Well yeah, before James joined the Heat it was always LeBron vs Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo.

        The ironic thing is that in 2012 Bosh was injured and Wade was hobbled so LeBron basically beat the 4 Celtics by himself.

  4. shuttaman1990 - Apr 2, 2014 at 10:48 PM

    Seriously why do it now?
    Couldn’t they had waited to do it at the end of this regular season/playoffs/finals?
    That’s just hmm not really smart? Let it ride out and implement it after just like the NFL does with rules?

  5. mp4philly - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:15 PM

    Roy sure does talk a lot.

  6. lj312chicago - Apr 3, 2014 at 1:51 AM

    ….anything to cater to LeBron James…..lets just play H-O-R-S-E……….LBJ and the Heat would probably still call foul….

    • lj312chicago - Apr 3, 2014 at 1:52 AM

      anyone who thinks that the NFL, NBA, MLB, or NHL has no interest in who wins “it all”….is just ignorant

      • ProBasketballPundit - Apr 3, 2014 at 6:57 PM

        It’s nice to know you’ve figured it all out. Any other pearls of wisdom you got for us ignoramuses?

  7. Jeff - Apr 3, 2014 at 6:50 AM

    Hibbert needs to focus on improving the Pacers instead of socializing on electronic media.

  8. DonRSD - Apr 3, 2014 at 9:12 AM

    Look at the play LeBron elbowed him.
    He jumps, yet leans to the side.
    Constantly abusing the rules Roy.
    He now knows his game is done. Put a fork in him.

    • bougin89 - Apr 3, 2014 at 9:22 AM

      Some people would say the NBA is fast paced. How dare a defender do a slight lean mid action!

  9. ogbobbydeas - Apr 3, 2014 at 4:00 PM

    You would lean to the side too after you get elbowed in the face , LeBron and the Miami CHeat get a lot of help 8 on 5 most nights

    • pacersfan1 - Apr 4, 2014 at 5:09 PM

      Come on man. Did you not see all the blood pouring out of LeBron James nose after Scola hit him in the arm. The heat and the fake heat fans want everything called the way of the heat.

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