Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 01-23-2020, 12:36 PM
Velocity is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 16,913

What should a team or individual do when it is ruining the game by being too good?


I'm having a hard time coming up with examples at the moment, although I know them to have exist or have existed (and even if not, one can treat it as a pure hypothetical):

Sometimes, in some leagues - especially, if in their infancy - there are times when one sole team, or one sole athlete in a sport, is so vastly superior that they are the Goliath to everyone's David and they not only are a virtual shoo-in to win the title every year, but that it isn't even a contest.

In such situations, it can get to the point where that one team is actually so successful that it is ruining the game, or causing fans to lose interest and abandon the sport because the disparity is so great and it is no fun to watch any more.

Assuming that the league does not, or cannot, change rules in such a way as to remedy this lack of parity, does it ever make sense for the team or individual to begin losing on purpose every now and then in order to keep fans from ditching the game? What should a team or individual do when it is simply way too good, a shark to everyone else's minnows?
  #2  
Old 01-23-2020, 12:41 PM
What Exit?'s Avatar
What Exit? is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Central NJ (near Bree)
Posts: 30,109
The team should keep trying to win, the league on the other hand can and should take measures to balance the sport a bit more.

Please see MLB in the mid-60s enacting the draft and other rules to cut out the big advantage the Yankees had built up.
  #3  
Old 01-23-2020, 12:44 PM
Oakminster is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Surefall Glade, Antonica
Posts: 19,322
There was some talk about Alabama "ruining" college football this way...then Clemson happened for the title last year, then LSU happened this year, and finally Auburn happened. Now I don't hear that sort of talk anymore.
  #4  
Old 01-23-2020, 12:46 PM
kenobi 65's Avatar
kenobi 65 is online now
Corellian Nerfherder
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Brookfield, IL
Posts: 17,282
Also, see Wilt Chamberlain.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
Chamberlain's impact on the game is also reflected in the fact that he was directly responsible for several rule changes in the NBA, including widening the lane to try to keep big men farther away from the hoop, instituting offensive goaltending and revising rules governing inbounding the ball and shooting free throws (such as making it against the rules to inbound the ball over the backboard). Chamberlain, who reportedly had a 50-inch vertical leap, was physically capable of converting foul shots via a slam dunk without a running start (beginning his movement at the top of the key). When his dunks practically undermined the difficulty of a foul shot, both the NCAA and the NBA banned his modus operandi.
  #5  
Old 01-23-2020, 12:56 PM
RickJay is offline
Charter Jays Fan
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Oakville, Canada
Posts: 42,576
Quote:
Originally Posted by What Exit? View Post
The team should keep trying to win, the league on the other hand can and should take measures to balance the sport a bit more.

Please see MLB in the mid-60s enacting the draft and other rules to cut out the big advantage the Yankees had built up.
The main purpose of the draft was to screw young players out of bargaining leverage.

I don't think these situations really amount to requiring action unless there is something inherently broken with the sport or structure of the league. A salary cap and luxury tax to prevent huge markets from killing small ones is a structural problem; the Wilt Chamberlain situation was a problem with the rules of the sport.

Simple situations where one player or team is just stupidly good sort themselves out, or else they don't and there isn't much you can do about it.
__________________
Providing useless posts since 1999!
  #6  
Old 01-23-2020, 01:00 PM
What Exit?'s Avatar
What Exit? is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Central NJ (near Bree)
Posts: 30,109
Quote:
Originally Posted by RickJay View Post
The main purpose of the draft was to screw young players out of bargaining leverage.

I don't think these situations really amount to requiring action unless there is something inherently broken with the sport or structure of the league. A salary cap and luxury tax to prevent huge markets from killing small ones is a structural problem; the Wilt Chamberlain situation was a problem with the rules of the sport.

Simple situations where one player or team is just stupidly good sort themselves out, or else they don't and there isn't much you can do about it.
So the books and articles about the Yankees Dynasty (50s) and why the draft was introduced is all false? The Yanks got to pick and choose almost all the top kids, if George Weiss wasn't a racist asshole, the Yanks would have been better yet with Mays & Mantle in the outfield all those years.
  #7  
Old 01-23-2020, 01:02 PM
Grrr!'s Avatar
Grrr! is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 16,916
In football, don't they usually bring in the second and third string players when the gap is wide enough?

Last edited by Grrr!; 01-23-2020 at 01:02 PM.
  #8  
Old 01-23-2020, 01:12 PM
kenobi 65's Avatar
kenobi 65 is online now
Corellian Nerfherder
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Brookfield, IL
Posts: 17,282
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grrr! View Post
In football, don't they usually bring in the second and third string players when the gap is wide enough?
In a particular game, yes. I think the OP is talking about situations in which a team or player is dominating the sport over the longer-term.
  #9  
Old 01-23-2020, 01:43 PM
mcgato is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Hoboken
Posts: 1,402
In NCAA women's basketball, University of Connecticut (UCONN) has dominated for over a decade. Since the 2007-2008 season, they have a record of 441-19 (winning 95.9%), have won 6 national championships and made all 12 final fours. As far as I can tell, nothing is being done to stop this dominance.

Then there are the early days of women's NCAA soccer where North Carolina won 16 of the first 19 NCAA championships (from 1982 through 2000). Again, as far as I can tell, nothing was done to stop the dominance.
  #10  
Old 01-23-2020, 01:54 PM
Colibri's Avatar
Colibri is online now
SD Curator of Critters
Moderator
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Panama
Posts: 44,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
I'm having a hard time coming up with examples at the moment, although I know them to have exist or have existed (and even if not, one can treat it as a pure hypothetical):

Sometimes, in some leagues - especially, if in their infancy - there are times when one sole team, or one sole athlete in a sport, is so vastly superior that they are the Goliath to everyone's David and they not only are a virtual shoo-in to win the title every year, but that it isn't even a contest.
The obvious example is the New York Yankees dynasty from 1947-1964, which won 15 out of 18 American League pennants and 10 World Series in that stretch. The Yankees themselves never considered that a problem, though of course others did.

Quote:
In such situations, it can get to the point where that one team is actually so successful that it is ruining the game, or causing fans to lose interest and abandon the sport because the disparity is so great and it is no fun to watch any more.
It may even prompt fans to sell their soul to the devil to beat the Damn Yankees.

The Yankees collapse after 1964 had a variety of causes. But regardless of why the amateur draft was established, it was too late to have caused it since it wasn't instituted until 1965. Eventually even the most dominant dynasties collapse.

The Yankees have been "ruining baseball" since 1921. I'm sure the next time they have a prolonged period of success they'll ruin it again.
  #11  
Old 01-23-2020, 02:24 PM
Moriarty's Avatar
Moriarty is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Denver, CO, USA
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colibri View Post
The obvious example is the New York Yankees dynasty from 1947-1964, which won 15 out of 18 American League pennants and 10 World Series in that stretch. The Yankees themselves never considered that a problem, though of course others did.
A less obvious example was the 1940's Cleveland Browns, who fits the OP because they were too good for the league they played in, which was the AAFC (All American Football Conference). Because of their dominance, the league only lasted from '46-'49. When the league folded, the Browns (along with the Colts and 49ers) merged into the NFL.

See, also, the ABA.

So, one solution to the OP's dilemma: Let that term merge into a more prestigious league.
  #12  
Old 01-23-2020, 02:44 PM
bump is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 19,383
Quote:
Originally Posted by Oakminster View Post
There was some talk about Alabama "ruining" college football this way...then Clemson happened for the title last year, then LSU happened this year, and finally Auburn happened. Now I don't hear that sort of talk anymore.
European soccer is rife with this sort of thing; a team or two dominate their respective national leagues, and since there aren't any salary caps or anything like that, they can be essentially unchallenged.

Look at Real Madrid in the Spanish La Liga- when was the last time someone outside of Barcelona or Real Madrid contended for the title? Or someone outside of Bayern Munich or Borussia Dortmund contended in the Bundesliga? Or in Serie A outside of Juventus, Milan and Inter? The Dutch leagues and Scottish leagues are even worse - in Scotland, Dundee won it in 1983, I think, and since then, it's been Celtic or Rangers every single year. And Ajax and PSV have pretty much run the board with the Dutch league for decades, with Feyenoord sneaking in every now and again.

I don't know that something needs to be done; people still love soccer in these countries. And people still love college football even when one team has a dominant run, or a handful of teams are dominant. People still loved baseball when the Yankees were dominant. Ultimately it's a form of entertainment, and if people don't like it, then TPTB need to do something about it. Otherwise, leave it alone I say.

Last edited by bump; 01-23-2020 at 02:44 PM.
  #13  
Old 01-23-2020, 02:58 PM
Jasmine's Avatar
Jasmine is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 2,613
Rather than ruin the league/sport, a great player ends up raising the bar and producing a whole generation of markedly better players who have become so by patterning themselves after an icon. The best example I can think of is Tiger Woods. For years, he was a titan among men. Since then, though, a whole generation of super golfers has arisen. They were started as toddlers, worked mercilessly on fundamentals, physical conditioning, and mental toughness throughout their growing years, and emerged onto the tour in much the same way.
__________________
"The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance -- it is the illusion of knowledge."
--Daniel J Boorstin
  #14  
Old 01-23-2020, 03:28 PM
Moriarty's Avatar
Moriarty is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Denver, CO, USA
Posts: 3,312
Quote:
Originally Posted by kenobi 65 View Post
Also, see Wilt Chamberlain
... Chamberlain, who reportedly had a 50-inch vertical leap, was physically capable of converting foul shots via a slam dunk without a running start (beginning his movement at the top of the key). When his dunks practically undermined the difficulty of a foul shot, both the NCAA and the NBA banned his modus operandi.
Wait...am I to understand that Chamberlain handled foul shots by dunking from a standing jump at the free throw line??
  #15  
Old 01-23-2020, 03:28 PM
Hermitian's Avatar
Hermitian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 2,762
Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
they are the Goliath to everyone's David and they not only are a virtual shoo-in to win the title every year, but that it isn't even a contest.
Is that really a good analogy though? Every time I read that story, David wins, not Goliath.
  #16  
Old 01-23-2020, 04:13 PM
kenobi 65's Avatar
kenobi 65 is online now
Corellian Nerfherder
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Brookfield, IL
Posts: 17,282
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moriarty View Post
Wait...am I to understand that Chamberlain handled foul shots by dunking from a standing jump at the free throw line??
This article indicates that, while in college (or maybe even high school), Chamberlain (who was a notoriously poor free-throw shooter) experimented with the idea, and did it at least once in a scrimmage while he was at Kansas (though not from a standing start), and that was enough to get the NCAA rules committee to ban it.

Last edited by kenobi 65; 01-23-2020 at 04:13 PM.
  #17  
Old 01-23-2020, 04:27 PM
rsat3acr is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,798
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcgato View Post
In NCAA women's basketball, University of Connecticut (UCONN) has dominated for over a decade. Since the 2007-2008 season, they have a record of 441-19 (winning 95.9%), have won 6 national championships and made all 12 final fours. As far as I can tell, nothing is being done to stop this dominance.

Then there are the early days of women's NCAA soccer where North Carolina won 16 of the first 19 NCAA championships (from 1982 through 2000). Again, as far as I can tell, nothing was done to stop the dominance.
Not quite as much money or interest there as there is in college football or the big pro sports so it isn't as big a deal. no snark or disrespect to any team intended.
  #18  
Old 01-23-2020, 08:40 PM
TonySinclair is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 6,003
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moriarty View Post
Wait...am I to understand that Chamberlain handled foul shots by dunking from a standing jump at the free throw line??
I can believe that. What I can't believe is the 50-inch vertical leap. 30 inches is good even for much lighter athletes, and 45 inches is the record for the NFL combine, held by a wide receiver who weighs a little over 200. Chamberlain weighed closer to 300, and had a thin build relative to his height.

ETA: and the answer to the OP is, Tiger-proof the course.

Last edited by TonySinclair; 01-23-2020 at 08:42 PM.
  #19  
Old 01-23-2020, 08:49 PM
kenobi 65's Avatar
kenobi 65 is online now
Corellian Nerfherder
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Brookfield, IL
Posts: 17,282
Quote:
Originally Posted by TonySinclair View Post
I can believe that. What I can't believe is the 50-inch vertical leap. 30 inches is good even for much lighter athletes, and 45 inches is the record for the NFL combine, held by a wide receiver who weighs a little over 200. Chamberlain weighed closer to 300, and had a thin build relative to his height.
See my reply above; the answer appears to be that Chamberlain *could* dunk from the free-throw line, at least when he was in college, though he had to take a few steps' worth of a running start to do so.
  #20  
Old 01-24-2020, 07:27 AM
RickJay is offline
Charter Jays Fan
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Oakville, Canada
Posts: 42,576
Quote:
Originally Posted by What Exit? View Post
So the books and articles about the Yankees Dynasty (50s) and why the draft was introduced is all false? The Yanks got to pick and choose almost all the top kids, if George Weiss wasn't a racist asshole, the Yanks would have been better yet with Mays & Mantle in the outfield all those years.
Read up on the baby bonus system and all the nonsense that caused. The draft is about screwing players.

There is no doubt it helps to balance things out, and the Yankees to some extent opposed it because the rising cost of big name amateur signings was affordable to them, but ultimately only one team voted against it... the Cardinals. Why? Because they had one of the most extensive systems anyway and didn't use the baby bopnus system as much.

The year before the 1YPD was instituted, Rick Reichart got $200,000 to sign with the Angels. In 1965 the first #1 pick, Rick Monday, got only half that much. $100,000 was a damn big deal in those days; the 1965 World Champions, the Dodgers, only had a total team payroll of about $400,000. The draft was a huge, huge savings.
__________________
Providing useless posts since 1999!
  #21  
Old 01-24-2020, 10:34 AM
Jackmannii's Avatar
Jackmannii is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: the extreme center
Posts: 33,013
A good solution would be to follow the example of horse racing.

We'll see how fast and versatile the athletes on super-teams are, when they're trying to maneuver while wearing 100-pound packs or leg weights.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:41 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017