04 April 2006

Case 11-01-01: The People vs. Troy Perkins

Oyez! Oyez! Oyez! All rise! The Supreme Court of Soccer is now in session, the Honorable Judge D presiding. All those who have business before this court should come forward at this time. God save this honorable court, the MLS, the US National Team, and all of us from the return of the shootout.

"Be Seated. Bailiff, what's on the docket?"

Prosecution: On behalf of The People Who Support DC United.
Docket #: 11-01-01
Defendant: Troy Perkins
Charge(s): Negligent Goalkeeping, 2 counts
Alternate Columbo Title: The Case of the Goofy Goalkeeper

"Very good, the prosecution may begin their case."


"Your honor, the people note that on the day of April 2, 2006, the defendant, one Troy Perkins, did take the position of DC United goalkeeper for a match with the New York Red Bulls. The people allege that on this data, Mr. Perkins' goalkeeping on two plays in this match was sufficiently egregious, and I might say, even malicious, to warrant sanction by this court. The first count is on Mr. Perkins' actions relating to the free kick of Youri Djorkaeff, in which the people allege that Mr. Perkins' reactions and positioning were so poor as to be considered shockingly inept. The second count relates to an incident three minutes later, in which Mr. Perkins, through his actions, presented the Red Bulls with a secondary goal.

"On the first count, the prosecution asks the court to direct its attention to the amicus brief filed by Commenter Matt, in which he provides expert testimony that Mr. Perkins actions were so negligent as to constitute an offense against the integrity of the game. Your honor, it is clear, Mr. Perkins should have prevented that goal, and his failure to do so put his team at risk.

"On the second count of the indictment, we direct your honor's attention to the surveillance video, which clearly shows Mr. Perkins leaving his line and muffing his save. In so doing, Mr. Perkins made a choice to settle the play himself, and his failure to execute either a clean catch or a forceful punch of the ball nearly cost his team the game.

"The record is clear, your honor, and this court must find Mr. Perkins guilty of both counts of Negligent Goalkeeping. That is the prosecution's case."

"Strong evidence counselor. We will now entertain the defense's arguments about Mr. Perkins, er, defense."

The Defense

"Your honor, the prosecution's case acts as if Mr. Perkins were acting in a vacuum. It is devoid of context, of the random interactions which make this game so exciting to watch. In so doing, it is establishing the typical witchhunt created by DC United supporters on their goalkeepers, a malicious and malcontent bunch who delight in torturing the prize of the day --"

"Your honor, I object!"

"Sustained, the defense shall keep their hyperbole to a minimum."

"Sorry your honor. But the defense would like to note and enter into evidence the distracting presence of two offside Red Bull players which obstructed the continuous line of site of Mr. Perkins. A call should have been made according to expert testimony on the laws of the game. Furthermore, the replay of the goal shows that while a perfect keeper may have stopped that shot, the defense contends the standard should be whether it is reasonable to expect the typical MLS goalkeeper to make that save. It is the defense's contention that most keepers would not have executed that play.

"On the second count, the defense notes that once again that Mr. Perkins was not alone in his area, and that it was Mr. Prideaux's presence interfering with Mr. Perkins that ultimately resulted in the goal. If anything, Mr. Prideaux should be on trial, and not my client. Mr. Perkins undertook reasonable measures to stop the goal, measures which would have been successful if not for the presence of Mr. Prideaux. The proper judgment of this court should be to acquit Mr. Perkins of all charges. Your honor, the defense rests."


"Both sides have made strong cases, and it is now the duty of this court to render judgment. The findings of this court can not be appealed. The defendant will rise.

"On the first count, this court finds that the action or inaction of the referee can not be used to retroactively exculpate the defendant from any guilt in this matter. Only the most egregious non-calls can be used for this matter, and the guidance provided to referee Brian Hall, in the absence of contrary clarification, means that we find his actions not to rise to that standard. However, we agree with the defense's standard for evaluating the guilt of Mr. Perkins, and the court finds that it is not reasonable to expect Mr. Perkins to have made that save. On the first count of the indictment, this court finds Mr. Perkins NOT GUILTY.

Now, turning our attention to the second count. The defense contends that Mr. Prideaux is at fault for the goal. However, it is the duty of the keeper to control his area, and once Mr. Perkins chose to leave his line, as the prosecution notes, he should have provided sufficient instruction to Mr. Prideaux. It is the judgment of this court that Mr. Perkins, on the second count of Negligent Goalkeeping, is GUILTY."


"The court hereby sentences Mr. Perkins to five hours of listening to Mr. Clint Dempsey, aka MC Deuce, live in concert. After this, we feel that Mr. Perkins will have no problems punching anything, or anyone, forcefully enough. Court is adjourned."


At 04 April, 2006 13:04, Anonymous J. Michael said...

Excellently done. I completely agree with the verdict.

At 04 April, 2006 14:11, Blogger D said...

Thanks J. Michael. I'm enjoying this format, so it's nice to know that it works at least for one other person, as opposed to that vast area which can be categorizes as "Funny only to D, and no one else"


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