When people want to keep the rule, or non-rule, regarding fouling intentionally, they often cite that a players lack of a skill shouldn’t be catered to.

“If a player can’t dribble well, or pass well, that’s their fault (too).”

It is.

But unlike intentionally fouling bad free-throw shooters away from the ball, the defense can’t commit a foul to *make* a bad dribbler dribble.

Or commit a foul to *make* a bad passer pass.

If a player is a bad outside shooter, the defense can and does apply that value into their defensive scheme.

That bad shooter’s presence, or lack thereof, allows the defense to sag off of him and help vs penetration; blitz ballscreens, double-team post-ups, etc.

But you can’t foul to *make* him shoot a three.

Just like you can’t *make* Roy Hibbert dribble the ball.

Hibbert’s lack of ballhandling prowess already diminishes the Pacers’ ability to penetrate gaps with the dribble. Just as Hibbert’s defensive strengths increase his teammates’ abilities to defend dribble penetration.

Should hockey teams be able to *make* Ryan Reaves shoot wrist shots too? ¬†After all, “it’s his fault” that he’s not a complete offensive player.

A rule to stop intentional fouls away from the ball won’t hide incomplete players.

They are already hindering their team on every possession.

And helping them on others.

That’s team sports.

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