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Testing the Basketballs, Part Three: The Roll

Executive Summary of Our Part III Findings: Unclear; more research may be needed. Some people at Lucky Strike thought the old ball had a little bit more bounce down the lane. Others thought it was harder to achieve a straight roll with the new ball, which tended to pick up a nasty spin. I put the old ball pretty much directly into the left gutter, and then rolled what I thought was a certain strike with the new ball, only to see it drift rightward and into the gutter.

Also, for some reason bowling alleys don't let you roll pumpkins down their lanes.

The Slightly Longer Version: Lucky Strike general manager Bob Dodson seemed to be the best basketball bowler of our three-man crew, possibly because he was a lefty. Even when he was on target, though, the basketballs hardly knocked down any pins. Really disappointing. But he, too, had more trouble controlling the new ball's spin.

We drafted a random bowler named Ozzie Turner to help; "the new one feels better and has a better grip," he said, although he also got more spin from the composite ball.

Bob also took the two basketballs away and weighed them on a scale; both weighed exactly 1.2 kilograms.

Overall, Bob and Ozzie both preferred the new ball, despite the spin issues, and neither was worried about the potentially slippery-when-wet grip.

"We don't have to worry about the sweat factor," Bob said. "I know I don't sweat when I bowl."

We should all be so lucky. Noted bowing enthusiast Norman Chad is wandering around the office today; maybe I'll get his opinion on that issue.

By Dan Steinberg  |  October 27, 2006; 4:34 PM ET
Categories:  Weirdness , Wizards  
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Next: Testing the Basketballs, Part Four: The Bounce

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