The grunts and bellows of pro basketball players approaching the hoop has become as much a part of the game as the dribbling, the New York Times reports. Players shout to alert—or, as often, persuade—the ref that they are being fouled before they take a basket. LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, and Dwayne Wade are considered among the game's best actors.
The shouting has gotten louder and the acting more over-the-top as the years go by but few cry foul over the crying foul. "It’s just a part of the game to try and get the call,” said Atlanta Hawks coach Mike Woodson. “You are trying to sell what you’re doing. When you go to the hole and you think you’re getting hit, the first thing you do is flail or yell."