Merry Christmas, Dream Shakers. I present to you a gift: a new word. Today's word is "5th Quarter."
"Can we go home already?"
Definition: A period of time late in a game in which a team decides to intentionally foul or call timeouts even while they cannot possibly win.
As in "Why would the Nets be fouling the Rockets down 15 with a minute left? Time to go - looks like the 5th Quarter has begun."
There is nothing more annoying than the 5th Quarter in any form of basketball. It's completely unnecessary. Yet, for some wild reason, players and coaches think that fouling or calling timeouts will somehow improve their chances of winning.
Bar none, the worst example of the 5th Quarter was during the San Antonio/Phoenix playoff series last season and the whole "Hack-A-Shaq" fiasco. It started in the first half, thus becoming the longest 5th Quarter in NBA history. True, it violates the definition seeing as the Spurs were capable of winning at that point. So call it an exception. And leave it to the Spurs to bore you to death.
After some searching, the only logical reason I could find for starting or extending the 5th Quarter is the video below. For those that don't know, Ricky Davis was one rebound shy of a triple-double in a game that Cleveland had all sealed up, 120-96. But then he did this and got rightfully hacked:
That's your only excuse, players: Ricky Davis. Nothing else goes. Stop fouling and let me go home.