Ref lockout - where now?

Discussion in 'MLS: General' started by squamuloselaggard, Mar 4, 2024.

  1. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    It’s the resistible force vs. the movable object. On one side we have the league (via PRO) trying to ruthlessly assert dominance over another little guy to save some pocket change. On the other hand we have a bunch of mediocre to bad refs who’ve severely overestimated their competence and their importance to the league and have now been shown not to be particularly indispensable. Sure, the replacements are a little rough around the edges, but as far as anyone can tell they aren’t screwing the pooch that much worse than the regulars have done on a weekly basis over the last 28 years, and it’s kind of endearing to see refs who are slightly terrified and mostly focused on not screwing up too badly.

    What will happen from here? Will the league hold its resolve and break the union? Will Matt Polster snap Messi’s leg with a horror tackle on a replacement ref’s watch, causing public perception to coalesce on the side of the regular refs and giving them the leverage they need to win the negotiation? Will Messi ever forgive that composer guy with the man bun? Will we ever again have to endure the torture of seeing Ted Unkel point to the penalty spot like Frank Drebin ringing a guy up on a called third strike? God I hope not on that last one.
     
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  2. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Or we could talk about reality, ,where the regular refs that you hammer on are seen as good enough by FIFA that they were selected to work the last two World Cu finals. The MLS VAR setup is considered one of the best in the world. Or where in week 1 the replacement refs that "aren’t screwing the pooch that much worse than the regulars" had three times as many calls overturned by VAR as an average week last year. And if they missed that many reviewable calls, how many non-reviewable calls did they miss?

    Anyone who thinks there's essentially no difference between the regular refs and the scabs either hasn't been paying attention or has an ax to grind.
     
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  3. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    Some of us consider this to be a good thing.

    Anyway, I know your view on this, Jason. I was hoping to hear from others on this. You can go nut-ride the refs over in the other forum.
     
  4. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Right, the almost universally hated VAR delays are now a good thing because you have to come up with something to justify the number of missed calls.

    Typical, no actual response so you jump straight to an attempted insult.
     
  5. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    Jason, do you understand the significant logical flaws in equating “fewer on-field reviews” with “better officiating quality”? No? First of all, there are very strong incentives for the regular crews to artificially suppress the number of OFRs. VARs don’t want to be seen as undermining their colleagues (https://www.reuters.com/sports/socc...var-call-save-official-more-grief-2023-08-25/), and the regular refs’ bosses judge them on the number of OFRs that happen. And so every week in the past few years we’ve seen decisions that could / should have gone to OFR but didn’t, and the logical conclusion here is that it’s because there’s a strong motivation not to go to OFR, often at the expense of correcting correctable mistakes. Suddenly the replacement refs come in and we have more OFRs? Is that because they suck? Maybe a little, but it’s also because the incentives to minimize OFRs are weaker, and the incentives to actually get calls right are stronger, which many fans are justifiably happy about. I’ll gladly take a delay if it means a fairer result. Honestly the ideal situation would be to give each coach a certain allotment of reviews they could initiate, like in the NFL, but for various reasons (none of which you’ll be pleased to hear about) that will never happen.

    And Jason, do you understand the logical flaws in using World Cup appointments as a quality metric? Do the names Byron Moreno and Koman Coulibaly mean anything to you? Do you see Drew Fischer let guys murder each other week in and week out and think “wow, that guy is at the top of his game”?

    My impression is that you don’t understand logic. Why you blindly support the refs is anyone’s guess, but I don’t really care. Your opinion is not well-informed.

    Meanwhile, I think both sides in this dispute suck, and neither side has much respect for the fans (you know, the people who pay both parties’ wages), but the refs are more delusional here. The league is a little crazy in the sense that they have a bit of a PR headache on their hands and they could make it go away for some pocket change, but at least they’ve correctly assessed that they have the stronger negotiating position here. The union refs on the other hand have zero leverage, barring some freak occurrence (specifically an injury to Messi that can be attributed to poor officiating). Their performance isn’t nearly as good as they think it is, and it isn’t nearly as important to the bottom line as they think it is in any case. There’s no widespread outcry from the fans. From the paying customers’ viewpoint, the replacements are good enough. Sucks to suck, as the kids say.

    Anyway, Jason, you’re not in the referees’ hugbox anymore, so try to come with some better takes.
     
  6. KCbus

    KCbus Moderator
    Staff Member

    United States
    Nov 26, 2000
    Reynoldsburg, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    @squamuloselaggard , I'm only going to say this once.

    If you want to have this conversation, that's fine. I do think there's an argument to be made that VARs might be less likely to recommend reviews when it's their friends making the calls, because they trust their judgement a little more. But you make it sound like it's a conspiracy to suppress, which I highly doubt, because ultimately the goal is to get the call right.

    But if you're going to have this conversation in this forum, you're not going to personally insult people. Take that to the bank.
     
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  7. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    It’s not a conspiracy to suppress. It’s a normal human response to incentives. If I have a personal friend at work whose work I oversee, and he gets annoyed at me and also gets dinged on his performance review if I revise his work too often, then it’s probably going to make me less inclined to revise his work, even if revising his work would be the right thing to do.

    This dynamic is consistent with everything we’re seeing. And it’s why this argument about the number of OFRs thus far in 2024 doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.
     
  8. Snopes

    Snopes New Member

    DC United
    United States
    Nov 24, 2023
    How is VAR best in the world when MLS doesn't even use goal-line technology like the EPL. Absurb that goals like Benteke's first on the season had to be reviewed to determine it was a goal.
     
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  9. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    I think the argument relates to the workflow and the efficiency of the VAR process. Again, I think this is a case where the refs are dramatically overestimating how much anyone outside of their bubble values this. I don’t think I’ve been bothered by the length of VAR delays in other leagues where the VAR process isn’t as highly regarded in MLS. What I have been bothered by, though, is the haphazard way in which VAR seems to be applied in MLS, and I’d gladly take a less efficient VAR process in exchange for feeling like there’s some sort of rhyme or reason as to when and how VAR intervenes. When the Revs were getting robbed of points last year due to, for instance, a bogus VAR offside call on an injury time equalizer (PRO admitted as much), it’s not like I was sitting around thinking “Gee, at least my team got screwed over quickly and efficiently.”
     
  10. Rahbiefowlah

    Rahbiefowlah Member+

    Oct 22, 2001
    Las Vegas
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  11. KCbus

    KCbus Moderator
    Staff Member

    United States
    Nov 26, 2000
    Reynoldsburg, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I literally just saw that tweet a minute ago. It's funny to me that last season, and really every season, I had to read countless posts and tweets about how horrible the MLS referees were, and now I'm reading a ton of Boycott MLS tweets because we aren't paying the exact same guys.
     
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  12. jaykoz3

    jaykoz3 Member+

    Dec 25, 2010
    Conshohocken, PA
    Club:
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Could say the same thing about the open cup crowd too.....
     
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  13. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    it’s the cognitive dissonance between observable reality (regular refs not that great) and the theoretical political beliefs (pro-union) held by most fans. I don’t think there’s much more to it.
     
  14. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    I think the league is really feeling itself right now. They just stared down US Soccer and got them to crumble on the open cup thing - US Socccer, which more or less has the capacity to end MLS by removing its sanctioning, got steamrolled by MLS.

    If MLS can do that to an organization with that much leverage against them, they probably like their chances against the referees’ union and some dweebs with signs.
     
  15. KCbus

    KCbus Moderator
    Staff Member

    United States
    Nov 26, 2000
    Reynoldsburg, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    People need to stop acting like this is realistic in any form.
     
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  16. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    US Soccer allegedly considered doing it. They got cold feet because of the potential for legal action, but it’s not so absurd that it didn’t cross their minds.
     
  17. KCbus

    KCbus Moderator
    Staff Member

    United States
    Nov 26, 2000
    Reynoldsburg, OH
    Club:
    Columbus Crew
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Yeah. I allegedly considered marrying Jennifer Aniston.

    I know everyone's opinion of the U.S. Open Cup has magically increased by about ten thousand percent since this decision was made, but the catastrophic effects of removing sanctioning from MLS would outweigh -- and it's not even close -- the benefit that would be gained by having MLS teams play in it. It would be like burning down your house to kill a spider.
     
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  18. JasonMa

    JasonMa Member+

    Mar 20, 2000
    Arvada, CO
    Club:
    Colorado Rapids
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I’ve seen some spiders where that would be a legitimate option…
     
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  19. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    If there’s a guy who has a button he can press that causes both him and me to burst into flames, even if I think he’d be ill-advised to press that button, I’m probably not going to be in a hurry to antagonize that guy, because he has the button.

    My point is that MLS didn’t give a crap when they were facing off with an organization that was armed with that button, so they’re definitely not going to give a crap now that they’re facing the PSRA, which is armed with a dull plastic spork by comparison.

    But yes, the wailing and teeth-gnashing about the open cup is silly.
     
  20. xtomx

    xtomx Member+

    Chicago Fire
    Sep 6, 2001
    Northern Wisconsin, but not far from civilization
    Club:
    Chicago Fire
    Hey, what the league does in the privacy of its own home is its own business. :eek:;)
    I don't shame them.
     
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  21. squamuloselaggard

    Your Mom's House FC
    Chad
    Sep 10, 2023
    Haha well, the lockout is over now. Details of the agreement are fuzzy enough that each side can declare victory, and the fellas over in the referees’ forum can go back to thinking that whenever players and fans criticize the regular refs, it’s because they’re a bunch of uneducated whiners, whereas when they criticized the replacement refs, it’s because they had accurately assessed that the replacement refs were a bunch of bumbling incompetents.

    Me, I’m just looking forward to feeling that old, familiar rage when Ted Unkel awards the world’s softest penalty against my team so that he can do his little song and dance

    [​IMG]
     

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