NBA Officiating News, Rulebook and Referee Operations

Officiating news and NBA Rulebook

POSTED: Nov 30, 2015 2:23 PM ET


Latest Officiating News & Links

Referees in Replay Center for 2015-16 will help determine certain replay outcomes

NBA to share 'last two minutes' officiating reports
Reports will be available: | Media Central

NBA Replay Center Overview: 2015-16
2015-16 NBA Guide
2015-16 NBA Register
2015-16 Rule Book (PDF)
2015-16 NBA Case Book (PDF)
2015-16 Officials Media Guide (PDF)

Rule Changes

2014-15 (PDF) | 2013-14 (PDF) | 2012-13 (PDF)
2011-12 | 2010-11 | 2009-10 | 08-09 | 07-08

NBA anti-flopping rules (PDF)
Official Referee Hand Signals Illustrated
Video NBA Video Rulebook website

2015-16 Points of Emphasis

POE Memo Index
2015-16-Points of Emphasis (PDF)
Memo #1: Respect for the Game (PDF)
Memo #2: 2015-16-Referee Operations: Screens (PDF)
Memo #2: NBA Explanatory Criteria for Screens (PDF)

2014-15 Points Of Emphasis

Illegal screens (PDF)
Continuation on plays to the basket and jumping into a defender (PDF)
Respect for the game and referee interaction initiatives (PDF)
Instant replay triggers and reviewable matters (PDF)
Defenders fighting over screens and dangerous plays (PDF)
Clear path to the basket fouls (PDF)
Defensive goaltending and offensive basket interference (PDF)
Performance update and travel calls (PDF)

What does it take to be an NBA Referee? Click here to learn more
about becoming a basketball referee in the NBA D-League or NBA.

NBA Misunderstood Rules

Foul in the act of shooting (PDF)
Defensive three seconds (PDF)
Goaltending and basket interference (PDF)
Delay of game (PDF)

Degree of contact (PDF)
Clear path to the basket (PDF)
Foul in the act of shooting (PDF)
Hand checking and automatic fouls (PDF)

Fouls Part 2:
Illegal screens (PDF)
Block / Charge (PDF)
Flagrant fouls (PDF)
Away-from-the-play (PDF)

Fouls Part 3:
Block / Charge (PDF)
Illegal screens / picks (PDF)
Flagrant fouls (PDF)

Fouls Part 4:
Contact with the arm / hand of a shooter (PDF)

Ask Donnie

Have a question about NBA refereeing or a playing rule interpretation? Send your questions to Donnie Vaden (, the NBA's VP of Referee Operations and Director of Officials. If your question is selected, we'll post it on with Donnie's answer. Questions that are not in regards to NBA playing rules or a generic question about NBA Officiating will not be considered. Questions such as those concerning specific calls in games, the game or playoff schedule, player statistics, will not be considered.

June 26, 2015: Ask Donnie Q&A
Feb. 19, 2015: Ask Donnie Q&A
Dec 9, 2014: Ask Donnie Q&A
Jan. 15, 2014: Ask Donnie Q&A
Oct. 24, 2013: Ask Donnie Q&A

Referee Assignments

Daily Referee Game Assignments

Referee Operations Executive Bios

Mike Bantom | Don Vaden | Joe Borgia | Steven M. Angel

NBA Key Dates

National Basketball Association Key Dates