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NBL introduces in-game rule changes ahead of 2022-23 season

The Sydney Kings celebrate winning the 2022 NBL title. Matt King/Getty Images

The NBL has introduced multiple in-game rule changes ahead of the 2022-23 season, sources told ESPN.

The new set of rules will come into effect during the NBL Blitz, sources said, with the league focusing on blocking fouls, as well as protocols during the final two minutes of games.

The most significant rule change being introduced involves situations where an airborne offensive player comes in contact with a defensive player who has a foot on or inside the restricted area semi-circle. This was previously considered a no-call, but will now be a blocking foul.

If a defensive player jumps with verticality to contest the airborne offensive player, then the restricted area doesn't come into consideration.

The context behind the rule change, sources said, is to implicitly discourage sliding under airborne offensive players around the rim -- which is a type of defensive play often regarded as dangerous -- while encouraging contests using verticality.

The league has also introduced a throw-in foul in the last two minutes of games, where an offensive team will be rewarded one free throw and possession if a member of that offensive team is fouled before an inbounds pass. That type of foul was previously considered an unsportsmanlike foul.

The final rule change also comes into effect in the final two minutes of games, when a goaltending or basket interference is reviewed and overturned. If neither team gained "immediate and clear control of the ball", a jump ball will be called; the possession arrow will no longer be used to determine possession in that instance.

The NBL Blitz tips off in Darwin on Friday, September 16 and runs through to September 23.