We all know what flopping looks like. It's quite funny sometimes.
Flying spectacularly into the air with legs folded and landing to the ground with a dramatic scream of pain is the trademark of soccer players like Luis Suarez and Ashley Young. Sometimes they do that after a defender puts his hand on their shoulder while trying to reach the ball. Other times, for no apparent reason. As it stands right now, if the referee determines a dive has taken place, the offender is shown a yellow card as a warning. But is that enough?
In the NBA, there are many forms of diving or "flopping." The most recognizable one is when a post defender throws his head back, falls backwards and slides across the floor as if he was violently pushed. But in reality the offensive player was just backing down the defender to get closer to the basket. There are many flopping basketball players but Dwyane Wade and Manu Ginobili are two notable ones. Beginning this season, commissioner David Stern has implemented a system that hands out increasing punishments to floppers.
The league has even attempted to define the act of a flop. The definition is "any physical act that appears to have been intended to cause the referees to call a foul on another player." Offenders will also be fined. For the first offense, the fine will be $5,000. The fine will increase after each offense, until it reaches $30,000 for the fifth time. After that, suspensions could be handed out.
Diving and flopping is not exclusive to soccer. It's a problem in all sports. While those involved in soccer have tried to do something about it, it doesnt appear to be enough. Would Fernando Torres be shown a red card for simulation had he known his wallet would have taken a hit? Would Suarez shamelessly dive every single game if he knew he would be losing money and risking suspension? Perhaps not.If the EPL was as concerned about diving as it is with racism, it would hand out fines.
The NBA is on to something here. Maybe the EPL could learn something from it.