I have heard of a shoe being foul, but never a foul with a shoe…
By John M. Phillips
In the Grizzlies-Jazz Game, Marc Gasol lost his shoe running up the court. Team Member Ed Davis returned it, but there was no time to put it on. Gasol then hit Derrick Favors it, attempting to slap the ball away.
No assault charges were filed, but this one was close to being a crime believe it or not. One expects and even assumes physical contact in sports, but not to be hit with a shoe. I doubt the State’s Attorney would prosecute, but this not only could have been a tort and led to civil exposure of Favors was injured, but battery.
Battery occurs when a person intentionally touches or applies force to the body of another person. The touching or force must be harmful or offensive, and must occur without the person’s consent. Both civil and criminal laws prescribe legal penalties for battery. It was the manner of the touching, using a shoe, that could be classified as unwanted, offensive and excessively harmful. If Gasol was deemed to have used excessive force to harm Favors, Gasol may be found liable for battery, especially -here- where the contact was outside the rules of the game.
Luckily, it was just a foul. Gasol’s team went on to lose. Game over.