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  1. #1

    Concussions in Sports -- From PFT, ESPN, etc (Merged)



    "When questioned, the Elders explained that they were in search of magical powers. However, they're actually searching for the whereabouts of a certain ring. This ring is a legendary treasure that long ago was known to exist"




  2. #2

    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    I've been giving this a lot of thought in the last couple of weeks, mostly triggered by this story out of Tampa Bay.

    It is *such* a dangerous game. I don't have any interest in boxing because it's just too much of a blood sport.

    I wonder, if I'm watching NFL football some Sunday afternoon and I see a guy get his back broken on the field, will I have the stomach to keep watching? I don't know. If I see a player get his head blown off the following week, vomiting in a bucket and getting sent to the locker room for examination, I don't know. That would be a rough pair of weeks back to back, and I'm not sure how I'll feel afterward.

    It's sad to say but I've been giving this issue a lot of thought recently and I think Florio is right.

    I don't blame the players, or the fans. It's just in the nature of the sport, as the quotes from Pollard say. The players are young men for whom machismo and money are both important and I expect them to act accordingly. The fans are the fans, living vicariously through the machismo of the players, and I expect *them* to act accordingly. But what both say they want is a violent, violent sport. Even without the added layers of cheating and dirty play.

    I have a lot of respect for Pollard for laying it out the way he did. I used to be relatively indifferent to him as a Raven, but looking at those quotes I suddenly find myself respecting him a great deal.
    Last edited by festivus; 05-06-2012 at 06:08 PM. Reason: ... and I'm becoming more and more of a fan of Florio. He does not tow anybody's party line.
    Festivus

    His definitions and arguments were so clear in his own mind that he was unable to understand how any reasonable person could honestly differ with him.




  3. #3
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    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    It's all of the lawsuits that have me worried. The league has to continue to do everything in their power to avoid damages and they can't change the past. Saw a Jim McMahon interview today and he says his memory is geting so bad he probably won't remember part of the interview.

    Not sure how to think on this one.
    World Domination 3 Points at a Time!




  4. #4

    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    It's such a thorny issue with no easy solution. But Pollard is right when he says that the "equation" doesn't work: athletes are going to keep getting bigger, stronger and faster, and rule changes can only get so much more "powder puffy" before it's not football anymore.

    We're a nation of hypocrites, to be honest. So many of us wouldn't want our sons playing football--me included, when that day comes--but so many of us soak up the violence and injury and 'warfare' waged on the gridiron by men who are SOMEBODY's sons.




  5. #5

    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    We're two or three decades removed from baseball and boxing being gigantic sports in this country. I don't at all think it's outside the realm of possibility that this sport is completely different in another decade or two.

    Here's another article on the subject.

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  6. #6

    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    I think baseball has lost some of its popularity because it is a slower more cerebral game. Society in general is more rushed, has shorter attention spans, and frankly is less cerebral as a whole than it was many decades ago. Plus television and technology (slo-motion replays, etc) has exploded over that time, which have not helped baseball as much as other sports. And of course football, the faster more 'exciting' game has grown over the same time period, for the same reasons, imo.

    Boxing's demise was in large part self-inflicted. The sport became incredibly corrupt, probably survived/thrived longer than it should have due to a special and perhaps random mix of personalities and rivalries like Ali/Frazier, Leonard/Hagler/Hearns, etc. Even Tyson, freak that he was/is, had a personality to draw audience; same with De La Hoya. Lennox Lewis then Wladimir and Vitaly Klitschko are as boring as it gets; a lot of the Mexican and Hispanic fighters are silent and personalty-free as well, like Cotto/Marquez etc (it seems). Plus MMA has taken some of their fans. The big fights still do okay but they are way less frequent.

    There are just a lot more options for people. X Games type stuff, and Nascar, and all sorts of stuff that was not popular or couldn't get any air time when people had 3 channels to choose from and no internet to chat/blog/discuss the sports. So that the big sports of decades ago would lose some popularity would make sense. It is actually a bit surprising to me that the NFL has expanded its popularity consistently over this time.




  7. #7
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    Wasn't it Teddy Roosevelt that tried to ban tackle football? Not a new thing in a sense
    World Domination 3 Points at a Time!




  8. #8
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    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    Part of the problem is the escalation of violence in step with the improvement of protection. The players get bigger, stronger & faster, so when you build better protection against the consequences of a collision, they just hit harder--because the guy doing the hitting benefits more from better protection than his target. There are only 3 ways I can see to deal with that:
    1. Eliminate protection altogether to force players to slow the game down (which wouldn't work because you'd still have the more-than-occasional whackjob who thinks he's bulletproof, & even if it did work what you'd end up with is something closer to rugby than the NFL game)
    2. Implement some sort of magic protection device that hurts the aggressor more than his target (good luck with figuring out how to do that)
    3. Change the rules to strongly discourage (penalties, ejections, fines) the culture of maximum physical punishment
    I hate the heck out of the powderpuffization of the game, but I've reluctantly come to the conclusion that there's really nothing else that can be done to reduce the effects of violence to a manageable level than changing the rules. Any anyone who's seen what the game did to e.g. the great John Mackey (among many others) can't but want to avoid that.

    (Just my dos centavos.)




  9. #9

    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    Well in terms of CTE, I think the research has just started and no real firm conclusions can be made in terms of the size of the risk. We really have no idea, statistically, what we are dealing with. And frankly, it is only very recently that the league and players (in all sports not just the NFL) have recognized the issue of concussions. So all players being studied, and obviously guys like Mackey, are players that got concussions and went right back onto the field the next play. They had multiple concussions in multiple games, and I think the science has shown that the damage done by concussions received on top of concussions (with no time to heal in between) isn't linear but rather exponential. So maybe simply the practice of recognizing concussions and properly resting healing before the next one will go a long way in reducing some of the serious longterm side effects we see in some former players today.

    But I agree with GOTA. I don't think the evidence thusfar points to a situation that would shut down the sport. I have seen claims (but couldn't find the actual study) that former NFL players are 6 times more likely to commit suicide than non-players (I am not sure if the study compared them to men in the appropriate age group or the population, men and women, as a whole, and this is significant because men have higher rates than women), but the suicide rate among men 34-45 (for example) is around 15 in 100,000, or 0.015%; so for former NFL players (assuming the study used similar aged men) this would mean a 0.09% suicide rate. Or in other words out of 100,000 former players 90 commit suicide and 99,910 do not. I think with statistics, depending on how the numbers are phrased or thought about, people can get inaccurate ideas about the conclusion. Same with other medical risks. It sounds extremely ominous when someone says such-and-such will "triple your chance" of heart disease/cancer/death, but when the underlying risk is 1 in a million, then your risk goes to 3 in a million, which is a far cry from turning a 10% chance into a 30% chance. In short, so far, no one has shown that it is the case that playing the sport guarantees longterm health problems, or even that they are likely; a lot of the evidence thusfar is anecdotal, and because some/most players are famous, they all get attention and selection bias kicks in. Also, in terms of memory loss and the nascent studies that are based merely on interviews/surveys of former players, I think one has to assume that some former players are more likely to exaggerate these kind of answers/symptoms because as a whole former-players think the league has not treated them very well for their contributions to the growth of the league.

    I do think there is a chance the powers-that-be change the game so much that it loses popularity. I also think if the more comprehensive future studies of players that played their career under the current concussion-wary rules/behavior show that the risk is very very great in absolute terms the first thing that will happen is that parents will stop letting their children play youth to high school football. I don't think the game is at risk of dying to laywers, as much as to a future yet-to-catch-on sport or lack of players when kids stop being allowed to play by their parents.
    Last edited by Haloti92; 05-07-2012 at 12:13 AM.




  10. #10
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    2 months ago I watched Ronda Roussey dislocate Misha Tate's elbow in what many described a historic MMA fight. And yes for those that don't know we're talking women.

    Before the fight these two had been going back and forth on twitter for weeks. There was a real hatred and everyone knew that someone was getting hurt which made it even more compelling. Not too many times a womens fight ends up as the headliner.

    That fight made big money and Roussey's next will bring even more. MMA isn't going anywhere and neither is the NFL. As long as they bring in big money and continue to try to make it safer they will have no problem in keeping it going.
    He Who Dares.....Wins




  11. #11

    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    Quote Originally Posted by GOTA View Post
    2 months ago I watched Ronda Roussey dislocate Misha Tate's elbow in what many described a historic MMA fight. And yes for those that don't know we're talking women.

    Before the fight these two had been going back and forth on twitter for weeks. There was a real hatred and everyone knew that someone was getting hurt which made it even more compelling. Not too many times a womens fight ends up as the headliner.

    That fight made big money and Roussey's next will bring even more. MMA isn't going anywhere and neither is the NFL. As long as they bring in big money and continue to try to make it safer they will have no problem in keeping it going.
    You bring up an interesting point about cleaning it up. I don't necessarily like the idea, but it all comes down to the money. Pride FC wouldn't have flown here in the states. White knew that he had to clean it up a little to get television contracts and so forth. The bad part is that we don't get to see Wanderlei Silva or Mirko Cro Cop (In their primes), stomp somebody in the head while they are on the ground.

    None of us want to see anyone randomly go through that, but when the combatants know the risk and are willing to engage....

    "This is the business we've chosen" - Hyman Roth 'The Godfather II'
    "When questioned, the Elders explained that they were in search of magical powers. However, they're actually searching for the whereabouts of a certain ring. This ring is a legendary treasure that long ago was known to exist"




  12. #12
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    Re: What do we think of Florio's article?

    Quote Originally Posted by The Excellector View Post
    "This is the business we've chosen" - Hyman Roth 'The Godfather II'
    Interesting metaphor seeing as how the Godfather films could be interpreted as a parable for the tragedy that occurs when men ignore that which is right for that which is profitable.
    My motto was always to keep swinging. Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was keep swinging. -Hank Aaron




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