How Many Personal Fouls Before Ejection In The NBA?


A question that is asked a lot is how many fouls does it take for a player to get ejected from a basketball game, players get ejected for different reasons in basketball, from flagrant to technical fouls there are many ways a player must leave the game.

How many personal fouls before ejection in the Nba? You are allowed 6 personal fouls before fouling out of the game and unable to return, you would not be ejected from the game unless you commit a flagrant foul which is a very aggressive foul that can be perceived as hurting the player with intent. Also, 2 technical fouls within the game would award you with an automatic ejection from the court.

What is considered a technical foul and flagrant foul can be different and sometimes confusing, thankfully the commentators do a good job explaining heated moments in the NBA. Let’s examine the levels of these fouls and how severe they are.

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How many personal fouls?

The Nba is the only basketball league worldwide that gives a player 6 personal fouls before he is fouled out and has to leave the game and may not return to the game but can sit on the bench. The NCAA and FIBA rule book states that players are allowed 5 personal fouls before having to substitute out of the game and are no longer able to return to the game.


What counts as a personal foul?

Personal fouls are the regular fouls that you see called in a game that a player commits while the game is in play. Technical fouls count as personal fouls, including flagrant fouls. If you get a combination of 6 personal fouls of these types of fouls you will be fouled out of the game.

Levels Of Fouls

If we compare fouls and getting ejected out of the game, we can do this based on the different levels of the fouls and severity of the foul. The minimum fine is $2000 dollars.

Think of a personal foul as the lowest form of foul you can receive and you are allowed 6 of them, they are less severe unless you get up to 4 fouls and then need to realize you may be getting into some foul trouble.

A technical foul is less severe than a flagrant but warns you that the ref is watching you and if you receive another one you will be ejected from the game. If you happen to have 4 fouls and receive a personal foul giving you your 5th foul and then you argue the call that gives you a technical giving you 6 fouls which would mean you would be fouled out of the game and unable to return.

Players will forget they have 4 fouls and complain about their 5th only to realize too late that they are kicked out of the game due to the technical foul also counting as a personal foul.

A Flagrant foul is much more severe and can cause you to be ejected from the game no questions asked depending on the intent of the foul. Not all flagrant fouls will eject you from the game though, they are assessed by officials through video replay and they determine the degree of severity of the play. They count as personal fouls.

NBA Rule Book On Flagrant, Technicals & Unsportsmanlike Fouls

The NBA rule book states that a player is allowed one technical foul during the game, if the player were to receive another technical foul he would be ejected from the game and must leave the court as he now has two technical fouls. The player may not sit on the bench or view from the spectator area.


(b.) A maximum of two technical fouls for unsportsmanlike acts may be assessed any player, coach, trainer, or other team bench person. Any of these offenders may be ejected for committing only one unsportsmanlike act, and they must be ejected for committing two unsportsmanlike acts.

In order to be ejected from the game it may not be from a personal foul but flagrant or unsportsmanlike calls. So those calls must be made and sometimes are changed depending on video review.


(k.) A technical foul, unsportsmanlike act or flagrant foul must be called for a participant to be ejected.

Some reasons that a player, coach or person on the bench may get ejected from the game. When this happen there is no warning you must leave the game. A fine will also accompany the player in these acts.


(l.) A player, coach, trainer, or other team bench person must be ejected for:

  1. A punching foul
  2. A fighting foul
  3. Technical foul for an attempted punch or swing with no contact or a thrown elbow toward an opponent above shoulder level with no contact
  4. Deliberately entering the stands other than as a continuance of play
  5. Flagrant foul penalty (2)
  6. Second flagrant foul penalty (1)
  7. Participation in the game when not on team’s active list

All flagrant fouls are video replayed, sometimes the play doesn’t look as bad in replay as it is live. Although most times a flagrant needs no replay.

Section IV—Flagrant Foul

  1. If contact committed against a player, with or without the ball, is interpreted to be unnecessary, a flagrant foul—penalty (1) will be assessed. A personal foul is charged to the offender and a team foul is charged,
  2. If contact committed against a player, with or without the ball, is interpreted to be unnecessary and excessive, a flagrant foul—penalty (2) will be assessed. A personal foul is charged to the offender and a team foul is charged to the,
  3. A flagrant foul may be assessed whether the ball is dead or alive.
  4. A foul must be reviewed using Instant Replay to confirm it meets the criteria to be ruled a Flagrant (1) or (2).


How many shots are awarded to a team if an opposing player gets ejected?

In the case of a player getting ejected due to a flagrant foul, if the player was in the motion of shooting a basket and then the flagrant happened, the player would shoot free throws for the shot and shoot two free throws for the flagrant and the player’s team would also get the ball at halfcourt.

If a player gets a technical foul the opposing team gets one free throw and the ball at halfcourt. If the player is ejected from multiple technicals the opposing team gets two technicals and the ball.

Foul Trouble

Foul trouble can happen in the NBA when a player picks up 2 fouls in the first quarter, 3 in the second quarter and 5 in the 3rd or 4th quarter of play.

The advantage to the opposing team is that the coach will sub off their star player due to foul trouble or they will go at the player with borderline too many fouls and try to draw more fouls on the player to eventually get fouled out of the game.

This concludes the article If you are interested in more NBA rules or enjoy improving your basketball game take a look around.


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