Depression Smack Talk on the Playing FieldThis comes as no surprise to anyone, but in the heat of a rugby match the other day in Australia, Storm fullback Billy Slater’s allegedly taunted the Knights forward Cory Paterson with the words, “go to your room and have a cry.” This referred to Paterson’s battle with depression over the past two years, keeping him off the playing field all of last season.

In sports, one would expect a certain level of smack talk on the playing field. Most of it is meant to incite the other team’s players, so that they react and play more emotionally. A player who plays from anger rather from their rational mind is likely to make more mistakes, so goes the common wisdom.

Where do we draw the line on the playing field?

3 Comments to
Depression Smack Talk on the Playing Field

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  1. “Nobody would think about insulting another player because of a hamstring injury — “Hey, how’s your sissy thigh working out for you?!””

    Have you never played sports? Everything if fair game and in fact knowledge of injury means the opposing team will attack that injury hoping to re-injure you and get you removed from the game and/or remove any challenge you provide.

    In sports and especially sports like rugby and football exploiting weakness is your job and a good part of that is psychological. Why do you think they design their chants, cheers and other things to denigrate the opponent. I mean seriously if you can break them in their head then you have won half the battle.

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  3. Why accept a culture of ‘sledging’ or ‘smack talk’ fullstop. It only adds to a culture of bullying and one-up manship in the wider society. Which then breeds a dichotomy of ‘winners’ versus ‘looses’ in life. It sends a message to be winner you have to take something from someone else. Sure in sport there is always one side that wins and one side that looses. But there is winning with honour and integrity and then theres well…’smacktalk’ and dirty play.

    What about the notion of fair play, winning because you were the better team on the day, better meaning, better skills, where the players talent is what shines, not there ability to ‘heckle’ other players and get under their skin.

    It all sounds very immature if you ask me. Something I would expect of children, not adults.

  4. This comes as no surprise to anyone, but in the heat of a rugby match the other day in Australia, Storm fullback Billy Slater’s allegedly taunted the Knights forward Cory Paterson with the words, “go to your room and have a cry.” This referred to Paterson’s battle with depression over the past two years, keeping him off the playing field all of last season.

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