NBA games may be about to get faster.
The NBA Board of Governors approved a rule to decrease the number of timeouts per game from 18 to 14. It also OK’d a rule that would limit timeouts in the last two minutes of the game to two per team, down from three per team.
The goal, simply, is to improve the fan experience.
“These changes will help us fulfill our goal of improving game flow and pace of play,” said Byron Spruell, NBA president, league operations. “Fewer stoppages and less time without action, especially at the end of a game, will further enhance the viewing experience for our fans.”
Each team will get seven timeouts per game with no restrictions per half. Previously a “full” timeout was 90 seconds” and “20-second” timeouts were 60 seconds. Now, both will be replaced with a 75-second team timeouts.
In overtime, teams previously had three timeouts but that’s been dropped to two.
The board also approved moving the trade deadline from the Thursday after the NBA All-Star Game to the Thursday 10 days before the All-Star Game.