MUST READ: NBA Fines Broken Down Over The Past Decade

MUST READ: NBA Fines Broken Down Over The Past Decade

Postby JSM on Thu May 02, 2013 9:07 pm

Very interesting read. Over at crunchology they breakdown the NBA fines over the past 10 years.

And the Cleveland Plain Dealer did a summary of the blog, hitting on some of the highlights...

Starting Blocks of the Cleveland Plain Dealer wrote: NBA teams, owners, coaches and players often pout when assessed a fine.

Most fans save their sympathies for other matters.

The blog breaks down NBA fines over the last 10 years. It shows there have been 341 fines over the last 10 years, for a total of $11,488,000.

Players have coughed up $5,355,500 during the decade, being fined an average of $28,757 for 235 various indiscretions. asks, "DO THEY EVEN NOTICE?," and comments:

NBA Fines are truly massive. The average of all the fines in our data set is $33,689. For many people, that is a year's salary. How do these comparatively huge fines affect their recipients? Consider the following.

Our Approximate Givens:
There are 375 active players in the NBA at any moment. The average fine amount is $33,689. The average NBA salary is $5,150,000.

And, the blog comments:
All players being equal, let's say one receives a fine for $33,689 over the course of his six-year career. That $33,689 fine would eliminate a whopping .109% of his six-year income.

Now let's say that same player was fined $1 million over the course of his career. He would miss out on no more than 3.24% of his six-year income due to the fine. For the record, no player has ever even accumulated $1 million in fines over the course of his entire career.

To put this in perspective, a $5,000 fine on LeBron James is the equivalent of an average earner in the U.S. dropping $6.25 out the window of his car.

In short, the answer is no. Players do not notice the fines. If they are not bothered by the fines, what's the point of handing them out?

Rasheed Wallace, who recently announced his retirement from the New York Knicks, is the most heavily-fined player over the last 10 years, levied eight times for a total of $205,000. The only player among the top 20 who spent any time with the Cavaliers is the retired Shaquille O'Neal, who was with Cleveland for the 2009-10 season. Since 2003, he paid out $145,000 for six violations.

Byron Scott, fired by the Cavaliers last month, is among the top eight coaches, forking over $60,000, an average of $20,000 for the three fines he drew. The Cavs, with two fines totaling $105,000, are among 11 teams fined at least $50,000 over the last decade. Neither former Cavaliers owner Gordon Gund nor current owner Dan Gilbert are listed among the seven most-fined owners.

Criticism of referees is the most common reason for fines: 81 (23.75 percent) of them. Former coach Phil Jackson leads his fraternity, with 10 assessments totaling $380,000.

When asked whether he believed his comments to the media made a difference in referees' calls, Jackson replied, "I don't think it makes a difference. I know the referees take an eye test, but I don't know if they take a reading test."

Social media gaffes are a growing reason for fines. As a rookie in 2009, Milwaukee Bucks point guard Brandon Jennings tweeted:
"Back to .500. Yes!!! "500" means where doing good. Way to Play Hard Guys."

For that, Jennings was fined $7,500. explained:
After a double overtime victory over the Portland Trail Blazers, he realized that his team had just crossed an important threshold with their season record. Unfortunately, even though this comment was completely harmless, and was merely an expression of happiness for reaching the .500 point, Jennings tweeted just a bit too early. The NBA has a rule that prohibits players from tweeting until they have finished speaking with the media after games. This innocent tweet cost Mr. Jennings a cool $7,500. asks "Where Does the Money Go?" It comments:
The truth in the case of the NBA is that common folks like you or me may never know with 100% certainty. The quick and easy answer is that the NBA donates fines to charities. But not so fast. Of the four major sports leagues (NBA, NFL, MLB and NHL) the NBA is the only one that does not publicly share the charitable organizations to which it donates fine money.

When a fine is served, the money is split evenly between the NBA and the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA). After this split, each organization donates its portion to a charity of their choosing. However, by refusing to announce to which charity the money goes, the validity of this system is frankly unknown.
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Re: MUST READ: NBA Fines Broken Down Over The Past Decade

Postby puffyusaf#2 on Thu May 02, 2013 11:03 pm

Money goes into the pockets of fat cats.
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Re: MUST READ: NBA Fines Broken Down Over The Past Decade

Postby Scnottaken on Fri May 03, 2013 12:08 am

I really do think, if you have a legitimate argument, stating league rules and precedent, that shows that a referree was in the wrong, there should be no fine, and maybe a review into the ref that made the bad call.
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Re: MUST READ: NBA Fines Broken Down Over The Past Decade

Postby JGC on Tue May 07, 2013 8:47 pm

They're not taking suspensions in to account. When a player is suspended, they are not paid.

I think players do notice SOME of the fines. Not all of them. Just like us in normal life. But it bothers me when someone says that just because over the course of a year a guy makes $5M, that a $25K fine doesn't bother them. These guys, like us, aren't getting their pay all in one lump sum, it gets paid out over the course of time and they don't all have their money just sitting in a checking account.

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Re: MUST READ: NBA Fines Broken Down Over The Past Decade

Postby 432J on Tue May 07, 2013 10:54 pm

completely forgot that shaq played a season with the cavs
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