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Shock Ball

Greetings readers,

This morning, I came across an article from the CBC talking about a four-team league. What exactly do they play? It has a fairly similar feel to soccer, minus the holding the ball part. But, add that game with tazers.

Yes, it’s Ultimate Tazer Ball. You can check out the website here.

Currently there are two teams on the West Coast, one near the East Coast, and one in Canada. You have the Los Angeles Nightlight, the San Diego Spartans, the Toronto Terror, and the Philadelphia Killawatts.

The tazers, while not as strong as the police might have in their arsenal, are still strong enough to give a painful shock.

The general gameplay goes like this: It’s full-contact, where you carry or throw the ball into the opponent’s goal. There are three periods of seven minutes apiece. Overtime is three minutes, followed by a sudden death with no time limit and unlimited shocking. The ball is the size of a beach ball, where you can carry or throw it. The field is a 200′ by 85′ rectangle, with a shock zone established in an eight foot semi-circle by the goal.

One rule states that there can be one defender in the shock zone, but any additional defenders can only stay for three seconds (thus creating a turnover if this rule is broke.)

There’s seven on the field at any given time, with the swapping out of players working like hockey. There will be three referees at one match. Gear wise: there will be seven tazers. Goggles, mouthpiece, a jersey with shorts are also required for players.

While you can say tazing at any level is dangerous, you can’t say that it is a unique take on a sport. I should also mention it’s not just a game where you can zap anyone just because, it has rules on that. Only the person with the ball in the Shock Zone can be zapped, and they have to have a clear possession. Also, the league doesn’t take too kindly to zapping in the groin or around the shoulder area. Just as a final thought, the tazers are not police-grade. Granted, ones with health problems or that can’t deal with pain shouldn’t apply.

I do wonder a couple of things, though. One, will more teams be added to the mix? Two, what will happen to the athletes down the road, health-wise, after countless zaps? Three, what will the initial response be from fans and others alike? (Remember, these guys don’t play until March in a tourney in Bangkok, Thailand according to the CBC article.)

Hopefully this does take off. I do find it as an interesting take on a sport, but will others? Time will tell. Currently, there’s a giant gap from California to Pennsylvania. Maybe a Midwest team is in the works?

Sources of information from the UTB website and the CBC of Toronto.

Until next time,

-Lee

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