The time may not be far off when a video replay confirms a scoring error in a jousting tournament and a lawsuit is filed against the Knight Marshal.Jousters may not be so common in America as, say, Civil War re-enactors, but they do exist. All over the world folks may be found fighting to preserve the spirit, or least some trappings, of medieval England. Now that the ultimate anachronism has emerged with the installation of video recorders at the lists in Pendennis Castle in Cornwall, American jousters may not long resist the spread of high-tech.Perhaps English Heritage, which has decided to experiment with video replay in this decidedly niche sport, should reconsider in light of what happened after the infamous blown call that almost certainly cost the Saints a place in the last Super Bowl. A pass from Drew Brees was about to land in the safe hands of wide receiver Tommylee Lewis when Los Angeles Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman slammed into him.As the video recording endlessly shown on TV proved, and Robey-Coleman cheerfully conceded, a yellow flag should have been thrown. That would have left the Saints with a chance to run down the clock and kick an easy field goal, but a failure to call pass interference is not reviewable, and the Saints had to suck it up, as they would have done in the old days. They took the three points right away, leaving the Rams time to draw level and then prevail in overtime, winning the right to get beaten by the Patriots.Officiating errors will occur in jousting too, although the chivalric code has presumably required them to be accepted without complaint. Once upon a time, that was true of all sports, and the notion that a disgruntled spectator might file a lawsuit over a football score would have been laughed out of court.
Roger Goodell, refs set to be deposed in September over Saints-Rams no call, judge saysIt now appears, however, that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell must give a deposition in a lawsuit filed by Saints fans over the missed call in the Rams game.In this litigious age, jousting authorities should remember that the replay technology they are embracing is a decidedly mixed blessing. Sure, cameras will always reveal error, but they will also undermine the sporting spirit, so that outraged fans traipse to court whining about “mental anguish,” “emotional trauma” and “loss of faith in the NFL.”What are such people going to do when genuine misfortune befalls them? Referee errors go both ways and it all more or less works out in the end. The plaintiffs would have suffered a tangible loss had they bet the Saints to win, although that was not claimed in the suit.Obviously, the fortunes of the peripatetic mercenaries who make up NFL teams have a huge impact on the mood of the cities that hire them. Many of us feel somewhat empty during the Saints’ by-week, and the NFL is such very big business that saying this is “just a game” will not make you popular in the average barroom. But that does not make football lawsuits any less absurd. Judges should just scrawl, “Get a life” on the complaint and move on to serious matters.Upset fans have filed suits over football scores in the past, but have lost every time. Indeed, suits filed in federal court by Saints fans denied a chance to see their team play for the big one have all gotten short shrift. Federal judges, being appointed for life, don’t have to keep the masses sweet.
For Saints fans, lasting effects from NFC championship game ‘no-call’ still linger entering 2019-20 seasonSuits seeking no more than $75,000 in damages can be heard in state court, however, and that is the sum demanded from the NFL by attorney Tony LeMon, who is described as a “superfan.” An appeal court has upheld a ruling that Goodell must give a deposition. LeMon says that any money he is awarded will go to the fund Steve Gleason has established to benefit fellow victims of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, so a win for LeMon would go down well with Saints fans, and be a plus for the judiciary come election time.Jousters earn points depending on which part of an opponent’s armor-clad body they strike with a balsa wood-tipped lance as they charge at each other on horseback. Slo-mo may make scoring fairer but it won’t keep the peasants quiet.