Refs warn Malcolm Delaney about 'flopping'
Malcolm Delaney's trips to the free-throw line might be numbered.
After getting to the line more often than any other player in the Atlantic Coast Conference through the first half of the season, Delaney said that officials warned him on Wednesday to "stop flopping" in the Hokies' win over North Carolina State.
"Everything I did was, 'Stop flopping,' " Delaney said Friday of what he was told during the N.C. State game. "Everything. I’m pretty sure every coach that we play is going to call the refs and say something."
Delaney made 6 of 7 free throws and scored 15 points in Virginia Tech's win in Raleigh, N.C., on Wednesday. That came on the heels of a win over Clemson on Feb. 6 in which Delaney had 20 of his 30 points from the charity stripe, which matched a school record for free throws made in a game.
Getting to the free throw line has been a key element to Delaney's game. Delaney, who leads the ACC with 20 points per game, is shooting an average of 11.1 free throws in conference games. And on Friday, he admitted to embellishing some of the fouls in order to draw calls.
"It’s just part of the game," Delaney said. "Some of the fouls, you won’t get a call if you don’t sell it. Sometimes it’s probably a little bit too much, but then other times if you don’t sell it -- if you watch game film on me, I get beat up more when I don’t do it."
Delaney also said: "If I’m not getting fouled, I’m not just going to flop and throw it away. Why would I miss a shot just because I’m trying to get fouled. I’d rather make the shot than to get fouled. People misjudge that.”
Whether he is flopping on a given play or not, Delaney has done a great job putting himself in position to draw fouls. He attacks hard at ball screens to create contact with other teams' big men when they pop out to defend him.
But even though a large part of his game this season has relied on getting to the free-throw line, Delaney said he was not worried if officials stop giving him the benefit of getting calls.
"I know how it is," Delaney said. "I didn’t get no calls last game. I can play without fouls. I can score without getting fouls. They don’t have to call fouls. I can adjust my game to whatever. I’ve shown that I can score without that."
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