Fringe NBA blog FreeDarko today has the first in a series of posts looking at social psychology and the NBA. Wait, don't run! This is actually kind of interesting! The post outlines a paper in the Journal of Experimental Psychology" that has to do with the performance of NBA players at the free throw line, following an erroneous foul call . You can read more about the paper at FD, but here's the punchline:
"...the authors calculated free throw percentage for the first shot after these incorrect calls, which turned out to be a whoppingly low 53.2%, substantially lower than the league average for the season on first-shot free throws, 73.6% (the league average was 77.8% for second-shot free throws). This suggests inequity aversion--players felt significantly less comfortable making a free throw after receiving an unjust foul call."
It's a bizarre trend that may be more coincidence than anything else, but the numbers are pretty staggering. Who knew there was such a thing as a "guilt miss?"