You’ve read through the basics on the new WFTDA rules that will be put into place on April 1st. Maybe your league did beta testing, or has been practicing with the new rules for a while. But have you heard MY opinions on them? Not yet! Lucky for you, I’m glad to share those opinions with you, my dear internet friends. Then we can have a comment party to chat about it. Ooh, fun! Let’s dish!
Flopping is now a penalty. Well, this is good/problematic. They fine people for flipping in the NBA, after scrutinizing all the angles of game footage available. Yep. You can usually tell if someone is flopping, but it’s hard to make a strong case for intent in real time. Very hard. May the zebra gods help us with the official timeouts required to argue this one.
If you win your first one, you get another. Seems fair. Maybe please reduce other official timeouts where possible, okay? Love, A Fan Who Watches Online and Gets Bored.
Can we all agree that the spirit of the multi-player block rule is no clotheslining? (ED: Um, we can’t! Clotheslining is taking someone down by the neck. I didn’t realize it was such a specific term. Learning! Anyway, can we all agree that the spirit of the rule is to not create an impenetrable link?) Over time it turned into no touching. And lots of frustrated players who didn’t know how to change their gameplay to avoid getting called. Will this fix it? One can hope. The wording is still a bit tortured.
Cutting the track
Once again, we’re cutting (ha ha) (sorry) to the spirit of the rule. Cutting the track is illegal because it gives you an unfair advantage over the opponent. When there’s no impact, there’s no advantage, so no penalty. Seems simple enough. People are saying that there’s too much “judgment” on the part of the official here to decide if there’s impact. I don’t see that. Officials have always watched you to make sure you come back in bounds legally. Now, if you touch one skate out of bounds and lift the wrong foot, they’ll just give you a second to re-enter legally. Works for me.
Who knows? I haven’t seen this tested. Who’s been practicing with 30-second penalties? How’s this been working? How does passive offense work? Is your timing off? Do you love it?
Overall, this rule revision seems like a reasonable response to some legitimate gripes about modern gameplay. It gets more skaters on the floor, encourages fewer power jam points, and it refines a couple of rules that made skaters crazy. I’m sure there are roller derby scholars out there right now finding new loopholes and thinking of new strategies that will need to be outlawed in a year or two. I’d expect nothing less.
Are you into these rule changes? Let us know in the comments.