Time-Axis Adjudication

instant replay

Instant replay in professional basketball illustrates the degree to which time-axis manipulation (ie. slow-motion) can distort a gesture and subsequently an adjudication of "intent". What happens as incidental contact through the intermingling of bodies during the course of play at extremely high speeds often appears in extremely slow motion and extremely brief duration of video clip as a deliberate attempt to strike the opponent — as far as the referee ruling is concerned. It is one thing to use instant replay review, in other words, and quite something else to use instant replay in concert with slow-motion capability: in the latter case the manipulation of time in reviewing the video archive thus becomes a manipulation of the juridical-political process.

Desperation Moves

onside

In certain modern team sports there are a number of what we may describe as normative, yet legal, "desperation moves" that the team losing a contest may attempt as time begins to run out — provided the deficit is reasonably surmountable. In hockey, for example, the losing team will pull the goaltender in favour of an extra attacking skater; in basketball, a team will foul deliberately in order to force the other team to immediately shoot free throws; in gridiron football, there is the onside kickoff, etc.

Strategically, we might abstract these three examples as follows: in hockey, given the particular status (and equipment) that characterizes the goaltender, the attempt is to create an asymmetry in the number of attacking skaters and put pressure in the opposing zone. In basketball, constrained as it is by a required player symmetry, the attempt is to dilate the temporal parameters of the game, "extending" it by rapidly fouling and hopefully trading off multiple 1-point shots for 2- or 3-point shots at the other end. Gridiron football is also constrained by symmetry, on the one hand, but does not have regular and rapid turnover of possession either, and thus its attempt with the onside kick is to overload a space — or more precisely, to swarm a proximity.

In each case we witness a malleable, plastic quality — stretching, contracting, spasming — that over enough contests will have a statistically significant ability to turn the tide of victory in the timespaces of zero-sum athletic enclosure.

ways of seeing

ways of seeing

NFL / Jan. 3, 2017:

"The National Football League has announced it will honor John Berger during halftime of the AFC wildcard game this Saturday between the Miami Dolphins and Pittsburgh Steelers. Berger's pioneering contributions will be remembered with a 2-minute jumbotron tribute and military flyover of Heinz Field."

platonic relations

The notion of "pure" competition is a platonic ideal. All competition is asymmetrical, corrupted and accidental, and hence all sport aspiring to this platonic ideal is also asymmetrical, corrupted and accidental by nature. The violence of sport does not come from these qualities, however, but precisely in their elusive inverse — which is to say, in attempting to police this pure ideology of the ideal.

splitscreen personality

diagram

survey

pov

Sport (and its various mediations) perhaps best expresses that "interdimensional" experience of Being-in-the-City within its logic, offering at once in the same "subjectivity" both flâneur (player) and surveillance functions (diagrammatic x's and o's, archival game video).

agon+earworm

text everyone now
you can hear the thunder fans
such a tough call
what material did you expect?
all it takes is a split second
the rusty razor does it again
they deserved this victory
they came out and were moving
that's exactly what happened

 

but that's besides the point
not much you can say
nice combination play
it's a speed bump in the middle of the field
hashtag not ideal
the obvious choice
coming in at number twenty
the arbiters of justice
and it'll live forever, 'cause it was on television

 

that usually means we're talking about missed calls
i mean get it together
i got four words for you: 'from the red line'
it doesn't give anyone special treatment
nothing should stop you from getting outside
there's no place i'd rather be
on the warning track
there it is right there
i'm just so tired

 

we call this in the playground the flat tire
summer tires, ditching that spare tire
the wait is almost over
a bang bang call
could have gone either way
he gets a favourable matchup
you don't have to be the villain to need a getaway car
don't worry loves; the cavalry's here

 

fuels better than water
show us your summer highlight reel
warriors got it going all of a sudden
lost it again

 

that's an absolute bomb
we are all sprinters
you wanna score early against anybody
please observe a moment of silence
get in the game
this isn't the type of opportunity that just appears
it's what's next
your focus defines you
the pace can wear you down
apply today
i don't know if there's a choice