It’s To Make Some Changes

I’m sure plenty of sports fans have seen the implementation of a rule and immediately questioned whether or not it makes sense.

I am not going to go through all of them – nor have the patience to do so – just some of the more absurd ones in the mainstream sports.

Football

A time limit needs to be put on VAR inspections.

If the Video Assistant Referee needs five minutes and a million lines to figure out if someone is offside, then clearly it is such a minimal call that it shouldn’t even be considered. The introduction of VAR has helped the game, no question, but the constant stop-and-start nature of the game has really been hugely detrimental to the sport as a spectacle.

Sin Bin* for Yellow cards

Another major issue with football is that a yellow card isn’t really doing its job as a deterrent. Most players just don’t care about a booking, and the small fine that goes with it. As a result, players continue to waste time, hack players down, dive, and so on…

Many people would label such actions as professionalism, gamesmanship, or experience, but to me, it’s cheating. If we start sin-binning players who receive yellow cards, then it could make the game more honest. A 10 minute stint on the naughty chair will force players to think twice about their actions. If the keeper receives the yellow, then the manager must nominate an outfield player to take their place on the sidelines.

*A sin-bin is when a player is removed off the field for a short period of time leaving his team a player short.

Smaller Goals in the Women’s Game

I am a huge fan of the women’s game and the way it has improved over the last decade in particular. However, one aspect of the game that just doesn’t feel right is the size of the goals. Men are genetically built to move faster, and jump higher than women, so it is unfair to put both sexes in the same size goals.

Six-seconds Rule

Either enforce it, or change it!

Keepers dive on the ball, check their Instagram, write a tweet, and still hold the ball for a week before doing something with it. In the meantime, the referee watches as time ticks away.

For a goalkeeper to hold the ball and decide what to do with it can be done in five seconds, we can give them double that.

Increase the time to 10 seconds and make sure to enforce the rule.

Fine referees that find it impossible to count to 10 and then blow their whistle to indicate that the keeper held the ball for too long.

No More Extra Time!

It’s time to abolish the extra 30 minutes, or go back to playing the “golden goal” rule.

This article, albeit a little outdated, gives good insight to the increase in games that are either won by the team scoring first in extra-time or penalties being needed to find a winner.

With the increase in financial or historical rewards in elimination games, teams are more worried about conceding a goal.

Let’s just cut out the unnecessary half-an-hour and get to what all fans are hoping to see. A good old nail-biting penalty shoot-out!

Formula 1

Larger Penalty for Causing a Collision

The current penalty given to a driver for causing a collision is five seconds. Such a small penalty isn’t really punishing the driver at fault.

Let’s say two drivers at battling it out for the win, then one hits the other putting them into a spin. The driver at fault will receive the penalty, but still likely win the race if they are far enough ahead of the driver in third. Reason; the driver that spun would have lost at least 15 seconds because of the incident.

Causing an accident should be a drive-through penalty. This means that the culprit should have to enter the pits and drive straight through without getting any work done on the car. The punishment should be taken within 10 laps of the penalty being given.

If not taken in the 10 laps, the driver is disqualified.

If less than 10 laps are left, the time is takes for a drive-through penalty can be added to the driver’s finishing time.

Basketball

Reward Smart Challenges in the NBA
Rule No.14 c. A team may utilize a Challenge to trigger instant replay review of only the following three events: (1) a called personal foul charged to its own team, (2) a called out-of-bounds violation, or (3) a called goaltending or basket interference violation; provided that, in the last two minutes of the fourth period and last two minutes of any overtime, a team is no longer able to utilize a Challenge to trigger instant replay review of a called out-of-bounds violation, or called goaltending or basket interference violation, as review of these events during these periods will be exclusively triggered by the on-court game officials

Basically, when a makes a call, the teams see it on the screen and then decides if they want to challenge it. They call a time-out, and if they challenged successfully, it was a free time-out, but they don’t get to keep the challenge.

If teams were made to challenge immediately prior to the replays appearing all across the arena, and players were held accountable for demanding that the coach calls for a challenge, then it would all be a lot more fair. In such an instance, if the challenge is successful, you keep it.

The NBA coach’s challenge is an example of a sport trying to follow other mainstream sports even though they don’t really want to. Let’s be honest, the last thing any NBA commissioner wants is for the referees’ decisions to be questioned. They made sure of that when they introduced the technical foul rule in which referees could pretty much remove any player or coach from the court by issuing them with a pair of technical fouls.

A Four-point Line

Players like Steph Curry, Damian Lillard, Trey Young, etc, love a logo threeeeeee. It’s time to reward them for their accuracy from long distance.

Due to the dimensions of a basketball court, it’s impossible to have a four-point line in the corners, however, an arc from 30 feet is plausible.

Tennis

Five Set Matches for Women

This is one that is unlikely to happen, but should be considered.

Having five set matches from the start of a women’s grand slam event – Wimbledon, Australian Open, US Open, and French Open – is going to be a nightmare for organisers, but the semi-final and final should be played over five sets.

The same rule should also apply for the women’s doubles and mixed doubles, too.

NFL

Coin Toss in Overtime

Imagine playing your heart out for 60 minutes, going to overtime, only for the other team to get possession of the ball because a coin landed in their favour. In the OT of a sport where getting the first possession is paramount for victory, it seems a very unfair way to decide that said possession.

Since the introduction of the coin toss rule, the winner of the toss has gone on to win 10 of 11 playoff games played. On seven of those occasions, the winning team won with a walk-off touchdown – the opposition never got possession of the ball.

This rule should be altered so that the possession of the ball in OT is determined by whichever team made the most yards during the game, and then allowing both teams to have an equal number of possessions until one team scores more points.

Other Honorable Mentions:
– Baseball: Designated hitter in the American League (AL).
– Football: Booking for taking your shirt off to celebrate a goal.
– Football: Salary cap at all levels no matter the income of the club.
– Basketball: Jump ball between two players that are clearly not equal.
– Golf: Disqualification for not signing your card.
– F1: Lack of suspension for drivers that commit multiple offences in a race or multiple races.
– Cricket: Allowing a substitute fielder on, but no substitute runner for a batsman.
– Rugby League: Obstruction rule in which no common sense is used.
– Boxing: Scoring.

As important as winning is, the rules should be in place to help the spectacle.

The above do not help that…

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