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Power Take: It’s time to give thought to revising basketball assists

Sorry if this is too esoteric, but it’s been bugging me for years: They should revise basketball’s scoring rules to award assists when a pass leads to a player getting fouled and making free throws.

Think about it: A player makes a gorgeous feed to a teammate, who gets hammered trying to finish at the rim. The teammate sinks two free throws. No assist. Why not? A pass that creates a foul under the basket is much worthier than one that leads to an open three-pointer.

The rules say an assist is “attributed to a player who passes the ball to a teammate in a way that leads to a score by field goal.” I think it should be amended to say, “in a way that leads to points being scored.”

The solution is easy. If a pass that leads to a basket is one assist, give half an assist for any pass that leads directly to free throws. How cool would it be for a player to get 1.5 assists when a teammate gets fouled shooting a three?

We can live with half assists in the stats. It’d be easier than figuring out the NHL standings.

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