HotelVitale wrote:I'm a strong 'superstar call' skeptic--always seems to me that superstars know how to draw fouls (a big reason why they're superstars) and that at most the officials maybe keep a closer eye on them since they're so often fouled. I also think we pay way more attention when a bad call is made that favors Harden, Wade, etc because we're looking to confirm the 'star call' narrative, while we brush aside bad calls that benefit Thomas Bryant or Aron Baynes or Darren Collison or whoever because we don't have anything we're looking for with them.
Beyond that the main reason I'm skeptical is that the league actually telling refs 'you must call more fouls to pad star stats' would require a big conspiracy that would 100% inevitably come out, and the backlash from it would be more damaging than the benefit of stars getting an extra ppg or 2. Seems like a losing strategy and I strongly doubt an image conscious league would make that calculation.
While there may be some superstar calls, it's certainly not a conspiracy. It would just be about refs having a bias.
But those superstars calls are overrated in my opinion. Calls have more to do with style of play or even shot attempts and usage rate, than being a superstar. Is Curry not a superstar compared to Trae Young? Well, yeah, but he doesn't create a lot of contact so :
Curry: 19.4 FGA, 30.4 USG%, 4.2 FTA
Trae : 15.5 FGA, 28.4 USG%, 5.1 FTA
Lebron plays a similar position as Ingram and Gallinari and he's the biggest star in the NBA. But he's shooting less FTs than he should compared to them if you're looking at their FGA and USG%.
Lebron : 19.9 FGA, 31.6 USG%, 7.6 FGA (6.5 FTA last year with similar FGA)
Gallo : 13.0 FGA, 23.8 USG%, 6.0 FTA
Ingram : 14.0 FGA, 23.2 USG%, 5.6 FTA
It's more complicated than that, but I think it would be hard to prove superstar treatment when it comes to fouls.
Stars also generally don't guard the best offensive player from the other team, so it's normal that they average less fouls.