The Nike Elite Youth Basketball League is about to kick off its 10th season, and for the first time in history, the circuit will implement three new game-play rules. Check out the new league rules below, and make sure to tune in next week as we launch the 2019 ‘Welcome To The Circuit’ season preview.
• (4) 9-minute quarters
• 24-second shot clock
• Illegal defense prohibition
The most major change is the switch to the 24-second shot clock. This should lead to some high-paced, back-and-forth action that will make for a very entertaining brand of basketball at the 17-and-under level. With the new shot-clock and the adoption of quarters over halves, it’s highly-likely that possession counts will be higher than ever.
The EYBL “illegal defense” rule will be centered around the “3 seconds rule.” The illegal defense call will be assessed when a member of the defending team spends more than three seconds in the free throw lane (“in the paint”) while not actively guarding an opponent. To be considered actively guarding, a defender must be within arm’s length of an opponent and in a guarding position. A three-second count is suspended if:
• a player is in the act of shooting
• there is a loss of team control
• the defender is actively guarding an opponent
• the defender clears the painted area
• it is imminent the defender will become legal
In addition, a player guarding an opponent with the ball may be in the paint without actively guarding the opponent.
The team committing a defensive three-second violation is assessed a technical foul. The offense receives one free throw and retains possession of the ball.
To further clarify, several NBA teams play some version of a zone, but they are all predicated on “zoning with man to man principles.” Zones will be allowed with man-to-man principles with each defender within arm’s length of an opponent. This will be an important emphasis and distinction this season as teams will have to guard. A defender will still be allowed to sag off of inadequate shooters, but must be in active defensive position and can’t remain in the lane morethan three seconds.