Last night during Phil Jackson’s pregame talk, he was asked questions about the unique talent that Allen Iverson is, a small player who could get to the rim among the trees and finish. Phil talked about a couple things, including the discontinued dribble (carry over, if you want to call the game old school), which Iverson “brought into the game in all its glory.”
Then Phil went into an interesting history of calling that rule through the last 20 years:
The basic rules have changed in basketball over the last 20, 25 years. You know, we kind of joke about it. But when the hand goes under the ball, that is considered a carry, and you couldn’t do that at all at any level when we played basketball back in the 60s and 70s.
You know, Jimmy Walker came in with the innovative “spin dribble” and he cupped the ball when he did that and they called him, they wouldn’t let him do that and it changed his game. College had allowed him to do it. Earl Monroe was doing the same thing at the time but he kept his hand on top of the ball so they allowed Earl to have that move, which became his patented move.
As the game progressed, that pronation of the hand, as we call it, under the ball became part of dribbling. Now it’s discontinuing, when the ball doesn’t continue at the normal pace, is what they try to register, and that is very difficult to do. So my hats off to these guys, they are trying to do something very difficult.