I’m only 3 scrimmages into my professional basketball career, but it’s painfully obvious so far that these European basketball rules that I was warned about before I came over here are no joke. In fact, the differences between the European “FIBA” game and the American game (how did we let a separate version exist in the first place? Were Americans not the first people bored enough during P.E. to start throwing balls into empty peach baskets?) are even more devastating than advertised.
My Cornell teammates know that I’ve always had a love-hate relationship with referees. When I wasn’t playing much at Cornell during my first thee years, I was in the refs ear so much that I came close to about 4 technical fouls from the bench, yet became friends (by friends I mean a handful of refs knew I was the annoying, curly headed kid on the end of the Cornell bench who had nothing better to do during games than yap at them) with the Ivy League officials. Once I started playing more and started picking up 2 fouls within the first 5 minutes of every game (guess I wasn’t as close with the refs as I thought), I began joking (I was dead serious) that the people who turn to officiating are the members of society incapable of holding down any other job (this obviously isn’t true: while refs from the bigger conferences have a busy schedule that takes up most of their time, many ivy refs have other jobs during the week and travel the northeast by car during the weekends for the love of the game…and the love of some extra dough).
Anyway, while I respect officials, I never seemed to agree with the American ones (I kind of turn into a jerkface on the basketball court). I don’t think the Euro refs are any worse than American ones, but I think the rules of this strange game they play over here are going to take some getting used to.Here’s are some thoughts that came up while chatting on Skype (lifesaver) with a few of my former teammates who are also playing “basketball” overseas... [See the Jaques blog for the rest of his entry]
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Jaques on the International Game
Jon Jaques ('10) blogs about the differences between FIBA basketball and the American game. He writes, in part: