Monday, September 28, 2009

Chin up Deadskins

I won't lie, the past 24 hours have provided the most delightful schadenfreude. It's been majestic to see an obsessively followed local team lose to a team that literally did not win a single game last season (their last win before Sunday was in 2007).

There was and will be an epic amount of smack talking because of the Lions beat down of the Skins yesterday. And the first thing everyone said afterward was "FIRE ZORN." But let's not get ahead of ourselves. American sports fans tend to discount the lessons of other sports, especially soccer, so let's just say things could be quite a bit worse.

When an American team plays like the Lions did last year, they get two rewards - they get to stay in the league and they get a good draft pick (plus because there is no lottery in football, the worst team automatically gets the best pick as long as they have not traded it previously). In most international leagues, the worst two or three teams get sent down to a lower division. If baseball was played like soccer, the Nationals would not have a snazzy new pitching prospect, they would be playing in Triple A right now.

Although, soccer teams get a parachute payment when they get dropped to a lower league, there is still the fallout of failure, and most squads have to be reconfigured since their best players flee like rats from a sinking ship. Getting promoted again is always a difficult proposition. Last season, my beloved Tottenham Hotspur began the season with their worst start in decades. They were literally the laughingstock of an entire nation. (A joke from last year: What's the difference between Tottenham and a triangle? A triangle has three points.) But they got it together and dodged relegation. If they hadn't it would have been devastating.

The point is don't fire Zorn yet. Going 1-15 will net a very nice draft pick. Then you can give him his marching orders.


Ozkirbas said...

That joke is hilarious

Dennis said...



"In most international leagues, the worst two or three teams get sent down to a lower division."

Should be that way in every sport. Forces owners to try to put a good team on the field, not just make a profit. (As you mentioned, the Nats are a perfect example of that.)

Jstone said...

Here, here Mr. Novakowski. The only problem is where would you demote a bad NFL team to? College? The way football works here is so different, that's partially why College ball is so big and important (that and it came first). Baseball has a minor league where players often hone their skills before moving up to the big time, but football is lacking in such a thing.
I say we bring back the XFL and reconfigure the entire league!

Max Nova said...

@oz - guardian ran a whole 2 page spread of jokes, the most clever was a street sign saying tottenham 5 - [other city] 2, and joking that they finally won a game but it was non-league

@Jstone - I agree, the NFL has no minor league really. Baseball, hockey and soccer do, though, and lord knows that football could have a second tier, but not the xfl again, please.

B.Graham said...

Jess was explaining the tier system to me yesterday, in response to this exact topic. Way to be super relevant in my personal life!

Actually this topic came up because I brought up that poor woman the Redskins are (were?) suing because she couldn't pay for her season tickets this year, even though she'd gotten season tickets every single year since 1968 and wrote them a letter explaining her situation and asked for help/mercy.

David Pratt said...

@Bengal - I hadn't heard about that story until you just pointed it out. They did win the case but eventually vacated the decision, so she doesn't owe the $66,000 they were suing her for. The entire thing was pathetic on the Redskins part. This woman called, sent letters, talked to everyone in the front office she could, and still nothing happened. She couldn't afford legal defense, so the case went against her by default.

Then the Post ran an article about her, and the Redskins contact her and say "hey, don't worry about it. We completely understand. You are free from your contract. Maybe you should have tried phoning or mailing us? By the way, this has nothing to do with the article in the Post."

Screw that man. Go Giants.