Is it against the rules to dunk in the WNBA? First and foremost, no! It is permissible. However, dunking is far less prevalent in women's basketball than it is in men's. Female players are not encouraged to use their height as a means of getting higher scores (as opposed to male players who often use strong legs as a way to reach higher heights). Instead, they use quickness and craftiness to get past their opponents.
In terms of actual dunks that occur in games, there have been only six this season. That's about one every other game. Out of those six dunks, five were by one player: Tina Charles. The other was a slam by Jasmine Thomas during an exhibition game last year.
There has never been a woman's NBA dunk contest because nobody has ever asked anyone to dunk. Even though it's legal, coaches don't want their players taking risks like that. They prefer their players to stick with strategy books instead.
The argument is that women dunk, but not as frequently or as frequently as males. Lisa Leslie made the inaugural WNBA dunk in 2002. The current biggest dunker in the women's game, who averages only two dunks per game in the WNBA, received the worst criticism as soon as she began displaying her abilities. (Jennifer Lopez is the actress behind this criticism.)
The truth is that men don't know how to watch women's basketball and assume that everyone can do what Leslie does. Women aren't as tall or as strong as men, so we need more creative ways to get off the ground and put up points.
Leslie was criticized for "dunking on women" instead of being praised for her ability as a player. This shows that people think men can't do anything special or unusual, which is wrong. Men can dunk, and women can show them how it's done!
In conclusion, yes, girls can dunk!
Has there ever been a WNBA dunk? You betcha! Seven different women have dunked in WNBA games since the league's inception in 1997. Brittney Griner is the leading dunker, with Lisa Leslie, Michelle Snow, Candace Parker, Sylvia Fowles, Liz Cambage, and Jonquel Jones among the other in-game dunkaroos.
The NBA has never seen anything like it. While basketball players around the world are trying to learn how to dunk, the only two people who have ever successfully pulled off a dunk in an NBA game did so during the same game. On April 4, 2004, during a playoff game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics, Shaquille O'Neal threw down a one-handed slam known as The Shot for his team that ended up winning the game. It was also the first time in NBA history that two players went up at the same time and no one was thrown out of the game.
On May 14, 2010, during a game between the Phoenix Suns and Dallas Mavericks, Dirk Nowitzki attempted a dunk but missed, which caused him to fall into the basket and make the score Mavs 1, Suns 0. After reviewing the video tape, officials determined that since Nowitzki had gone over the backboard he was allowed to attempt a dunk. The Mavs went on to win the game 89-83.
There you have it: yes, someone has already dunked in the WNBA.
According to this 2009 Q&A with Bernie Fryer (NBA Vice President of Referee Operations and Director of Officials), it is also permitted: Is it legal to throw the ball off the backboard, collect your own rebound, and slam without touching the ground? —Blaise Bernie's response: Yes. That's a free throw.
As long as you're not "throwing" it at someone's head or torso, they have the right to block any shot they want, even if it means throwing their body at you.
In fact, according to this article from ESPN.com, some players do it quite frequently: In an average NBA season, about 20,000 shots are taken at the foul line alone. If everyone who attempted a shot were able to make them, we'd be talking about one made trip every two seconds for nearly 10 hours straight!
The reason why players do this is because it's very difficult to make a free throw, especially if you don't get much practice. If they don't throw their body at the ball, then they won't be able to block any more shots and will have to take another free throw next time down the floor.
Also, remember that during game action there are always refs on the court to prevent exactly what you're asking about happening. If a player feels like they're being attacked, they can ask that you call a foul.
Initially, the alley oop did not include dunking because dunking was prohibited in collegiate basketball games at the time. In current play, however, the basket is made by the second player dunking the ball. The play has evolved into a rapid scoring strategy and is even a premeditated play for many players. Alley-oops are commonly used as screeners'screens that leave their opponents with no choice but to chase them down for the slam.
The first documented case of an alley-oop occurred on January 10, 1986 during a college game between Stanford and California. After making several shots, Cal's Michael Cooper was given the ball with seconds left and was intercepted while trying to shoot by Stanford's Eric Murdock who then threw it toward the hoop. The ball hit a stanchion above the rim and dropped through to give Stanford a 77-76 win. It is considered one of the most important plays in Cal basketball history because it introduced the idea of using its last possession to score.
After the play became popularized, coaches began to use it as a way to get their best players involved in the offense without putting them in danger of being called for fouls. Because of this, dunks have become more common than ever before.
Dunks are technically considered offensive goaltending, which is why they were prohibited in the early days of the game. It is unlawful for a player to grip the rim and then dunk, but throwing the ball directly through the hoop is not and has never been offensive goaltending. This rule was adopted to encourage more creative scoring opportunities and reduce free throws taken by opponents who had just defeated their teams with spectacular plays.
In today's NBA, there are three ways that a player can score: shooting, driving, or drawing fouls. Since the advent of the three-point line in 1979, it has become very common for players to use their height and reach to block shots. Some players such as Kevin Durant and LeBron James are known for their ability to block shots.
Blocks are only called when the ball contacts the front of the rim. If a player blocks a shot but fails to touch the ball before it hits the floor, no call is made. However, if he does contact the ball prior to it hitting the ground, it is legal and a charge should be given.
Only players who are members of a team at the time that the ball is thrown into the basket can score. Therefore, if you are sitting on the bench during a play, you cannot score. You can give advice to your teammates or signal for a steal, but unless you are actually playing the game, you cannot score.
The Final Word So it's official: basketball players are not permitted to slam a free throw attempt. Basketball players may dunk from the foul line, but not from the free throw line. While this rule seems obvious, officials apparently have been throwing out violations of it all season. Thus, the only people allowed to dunk are those who get fouled while attempting their shot.
If you're a player trying to get away with dunking, here's what you should do: First, if you're able to go up for a layup or jumper instead of tossing it down, do so. If an opponent is standing near the foul line when you shoot the ball, you might want to take them out of the play by throwing it hard against the backboard or straight at an opposing player's head.
However, if you end up with the ball in your hands after taking contact from a defender and are unable to score, there are two things you can do. You can either shoot a free throw or you can toss your own ball into the stands (provided it isn't still being used by another player) and get a new one from an attendant.
In other words, don't try to be a hero by dunking illegally. It's not worth it!