Raymond Felton on the fundamentals of palming
There is no more fitting artifact of the laughingstock Stern administration than this 2010 "ihoops" commercial featuring point guard Raymond Felton. For those not in the know, ihoops is "the official youth basketball initiative of the NCAA, the NBA and the WNBA."
The off-screen announcer informs viewers that "ihoops.com is the ultimate online resource for youth basketball, designed to take your knowledge and skills to the next level." Felton emerges at the 0:24 mark of the commercial and repeatedly demonstrates a lefthanded — and illegal — blatant palming pseudo-dribble as the announcer declares, without irony or sarcasm, "learn the fundamentals of the game from those who play it best."
This is not a case of mismatched audio and video, where Felton is under the impression his task is to demonstrate an illegal act. No, this is how Felton routinely "dribbles" with his left hand. And he's hardly the only point guard who does. Why not? It's rarely called and it's much more effective than a legal dribble.
The slower, looping, palming motion gets the player's left hand under the ball, so he has the option of whipping a one-hand lefty pass with every dribble. If he dribbled legally, he'd only have that option after his last dribble, not any of the ones that preceded it, because once that hand goes under the ball he can only throw the ball or pick it up; he can't dribble again. At least not legally. And by cradling the ball as he "dribbles," the player always has the option of springing a left-to-right crossover on his defender. The ref will not only let the cradle slide, he'll allow an extra step so the driver can finish as a righty (off his left foot) even though his last dribble was as a lefty. Life is good for the modern point guard and others who monopolize the ball.