As I mentioned in Part 1 of this series, I have been chosen to be the new Commissar of Sports. I am therefore fulfilling my duty to The People by informing them how I will reform the world of sports in the post-revolutionary period.
I will this time focus on two sports that are currently fighting it out for the dubious honor of being #4 in a three-sport society: soccer and hockey.
The first point is the name – it’s soccer. Your beloved Commissar is a big soccer fan, but he finds few things more annoying than the twits who insist on calling it ‘football’, usually adding self-righteously (and incorrectly) that, “It’s called football everywhere else in the world.” Such people will be accommodated by being stripped of their citizenship and deported to one of those countries – maybe Iraq.
With that out of the way, we’ll move on to reforming the sport itself. The first thing is to add at least a couple more refs. The idea of having only one ref is utterly absurd – basketball has three on a court that’s maybe one-third the size of a soccer field (I’m too busy serving the needs of The People to look up the actual dimensions). Baseball has four and football has so many everybody long ago lost count – and in both those sports most of the players spend most of the game standing around, so how tough is it to watch them?
Once we have three or four refs, we’ll be better able to deal with soccer’s most annoying trait – flopping. Actually, most sports have some version of this – an attempt to get a phony foul called, but soccer is the worst (with basketball not far behind). With multiple refs, at least one will have been in position to see if there really was a foul.
Flopping will draw a yellow card, with egregious examples drawing a straight red. If that doesn’t work, we’ll have a portable stake on the sidelines, which will be rolled out to the mid-field line, a bonfire built, and the flopper burned at the stake, It shouldn’t take more than a few such examples for the practice to cease.
Additional refs will be able to watch off-the-ball action, where a lot of fouls go uncalled. They will also help solve the problem of determining whether the ball has completely crossed the goal line. If that is not sufficient, we will add RFID chips to the ball. We’ll try to avoid instant replay.
It seems obvious that the National Hockey League thinks nobody will come to their games if they actually do something about fighting (otherwise, presumably, they would have done something). They’re probably wrong, since people watch hockey in the Olympics, where no fighting is allowed.
In any case, we will ban fighting. If nobody shows up for the games, then we’ll eliminate the sport.
Future posts will deal with football, basketball, college sports, and other issues.
Please provide your feedback, which will be carefully considered. You must recognize, however, that The Party knows what is best for you in all matters, and that in my role as Commissar, I am acting on behalf of The Party. Therefore I am right.