Anti-flopping rules have just entered the NBA (and have done little stop Lebron) in an attempt to prevent players from using the foul rules to their advantage. But flopping is an integral part of sport. In fact, it has been a worldwide phenomena for years.
Americans first caught wind of flopping when American football players started doing it to give their teams time to prepare for their opponents’ next play. The outrage has been heard by the NFL, but they’re handcuffed. Football is a violent sport. Players get injured. Questioning every injury by every player on the field would cost a lot of money and several energetic meetings with the NFL Players’ Union.
Soccer players, however, have been flopping for years. Whether to slow the game down like in American football or score a penalty kick, players have been falling to the ground in pretend pain since well before Pele started scoring on teams at will in the 50’s and 60’s.
Flopping is a soccer tradition so strong, Dirk Nowitzki of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks got in the act during a charity soccer game in Germany. His defender was nowhere near him when committing a slide tackle, but that didn’t stop Dirk from doing what needed to be done: flopping. The result? A free kick. Good to see that even in charity events the traditions of modern sport hold true.
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