The Dirtiest NBA Team And Player

To find the dirtiest NBA team and players we looked at personal foul data for the last 5 seasons. And it turns out the Detroit Pistons are the most foul/dirty team in the NBA.  #BadBoys

We analyzed NBA teams’ performance over the past five years to identify who committed the most personal fouls, and divided this against playing time to reveal the dirtiest of the dirty.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. The Detroit Pistons committed the most violations, with a foul recorded once every 11 minutes and 19 seconds.

This is significantly higher than the league average offense frequency (one every 12 minutes) and is a far more disruptive performance when compared to the Pistons’ rivals the Chicago Bulls, who committed a foul once every 12 minutes and 17 seconds.

A personal foul is caused when a player makes illegal contact with another player on the court to block their movement, such as charging and blocking.

According to the NBA, infractions of the rules are taken very seriously and can lead to a loss of ball possession or free throws. If a player accumulates six personal fouls in a game, he will be disqualified from the game.

It’s also interesting to see which team is likely to be most affected by the NBA’s recent attempts to cut down on ‘flopping’, which sees players try to draw a charging violation on an opposing team. Those suspected of flopping will be penalized and fined up to $2,000.

The Phoenix Suns come in as the second most badly-behaved team with a personal foul every 11 minutes 24 seconds. The team have never won a championship, but with the removal of Deandre Ayton, who commits a foul on average every 10 minutes, they may have a shot.

Fans of the Minnesota Timberwolves will be disappointed to learn that after averaging a personal foul every 11 minutes 25 seconds they’re the third most disruptive team.

Interestingly, the Golden State Warriors – who won the 2022-23 NBA title- are in the top five teams for the unruliest players, reporting an offense every 11 minutes and 27 seconds.

The Top Ten Dirtiest Teams in the NBA

  Team  Minutes Per Game  Personal Fouls  Frequency of Personal Fouls 
Detroit Pistons  241.8  21.4  11 minutes 19 seconds 
Phoenix Suns  241.6  21.2  11 minutes 24 seconds 
Minnesota Timberwolves  241.9  21.2  11 minutes 25 seconds 
Golden State Warriors  241.2  21.1  11 minutes 27 seconds 
Houston Rockets  241.1  20.9  11 minutes 32 seconds 
New York Knicks  242  20.8  11 minutes 37 seconds 
Toronto Raptors  241.6  20.7  11 minutes 41 seconds 
Atlanta Hawks  241.8  20.6  11 minutes 43 seconds 
Brooklyn Nets  241.9  20.6  11 minutes 43 seconds 
10  L.A. Clippers  241.3  20.6  11 minutes 44 seconds 

On the other end of the scale, the NBA’s best-behaved team is the Milwaukee Bucks, with a personal foul committed once every 12 minutes 59 seconds.

Following closely behind the Bucks is Cleveland Cavaliers and San Antonio Spurs as the second and third most not dirty teams, with a foul committed once every 12 minutes 58 seconds and every 12 minutes 57 seconds.

Who is the Dirtiest Player in The NBA?

We used the same methodology as we did for the dirtiest NBA team; the total personal fouls committed by each player divided by their playing time.

The worst-behaved NBA player is Dewayne Dedmon causing the most disruption over the last five seasons.

The former Philadelphia 76ers center committed a foul every 6 minutes and 27 seconds – compared to the NBA average of every 13 minutes

This is significantly higher than the average offense frequency committed across the NBA (once every 13 minutes and 5 seconds) and is more disruptive than the 76ers’ average offense rate of once every 11 minutes and 49 seconds.

The second most badly-behaved player is JaVale McGee who plays for the Sacramento Kings with a foul once every six minutes and 55 seconds.

The third-worst came out as Minnesota Timberwolves’ Naz Reid, with a foul every 7 minutes and 3 seconds.

Surprisingly, notorious bad boy Dillion Brooks only ranked as the 20th dirtiest player in the NBA.

The Top Ten Dirtiest Players in the NBA

     Player    Minutes Played     Personal Fouls    Frequency of Personal Fouls  
1     Dewayne Dedmon  4084   632   6 minutes 27 seconds 
2     JaVale McGee  5006   723   6 minutes 55 seconds  
3     Naz Reid  4308   610   7 minutes 3 seconds 
4     Moritz Wagner  4072   576   7 minutes 4 seconds  
5     JaMychal Green  5680   774   7 minutes 20 seconds  
6     Alex Len  4278   582   7 minutes 20 seconds 
7     Jaren Jackson Jr  7308   993   7 minutes 21 seconds  
8     Nerlens Noel  4486   607   7 minutes 23 seconds 
9     Richaun Holmes  5630   754   7 minutes 28 seconds 
10      Daniel Theis  5161   665   7 minutes 45 seconds 

Who Is The “Nicest” NBA Player?

The NBA’s best-behaved player is Tyus Jones, who plays for the Washington Wizards who reports 81% fewer personal fouls than NBA bad boy Dewayne Dedmon.

Following closely is Harrison Barnes who plays for the Sacramento Kings, while the third-least troublesome player is Derrick Rose of the Memphis Grizzlies.

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