Friday, June 13, 2008

Now, what????

I’ve been a sports fan for nearly all my life. I’ve avidly followed all 4 major professional sports teams in my city, and even some of the minor ones … and believe me when I say that it’s really tough to be a fan of any of the Philadelphia sports teams, especially considering that none of them have brought the city a championship since 1983 – probably a topic for another blog post.

What I’m really concerned about is the “health” of the “big 4.” Think about it – each of them has had to deal with some sort of hardship or scandal over the past few years.

• Major League Baseball has been wrestling with the steroid/human performance enhancing drug situation – a problem that has jeopardized the integrity of the entire sport, a sport that relies heavily on stats and “magical” legendary numbers. Thanks to such players as Mark McGuire, Sammy Sosa, Barry Bonds, and even Roger Clemons, not to mention the implicit encouragement by the league in the 1990’s, it’s hard to take the numbers and stats seriously anymore, let alone root for the “big-name” players without openly wondering how long they’ve been juicing up.

• The NFL has been struggling with the whole “Spygate” scandal in recent months, prompting many to wonder out loud if the New England Patriots ever legitimately won their three Super Bowls this decade. A potential government investigation could blow the roof off of this (probably not, though), but fans still have lost some faith in the game.

• Basketball is also dealing with integrity issues, as the NBA is in a struggle with a former basketball referee over an alleged gambling scandal. Just a few days ago, a particularly damaging story surfaced about the possibility of a few playoff games being “fixed” by NBA officials. Thankfully, the Sixers sucked in those years, so it didn’t affect the Philly team as much.

• The NHL emerged from a lockout a few years ago, and chose to sign a contract with a fringe “sports” network that many Americans are unable to even get on their cable systems. The league is dangerously close to becoming irrelevant, and expansion into cities where ice is only found in cold drinks has done its part in eroding the league’s “legendary” status.

Sadly, “sports” like NASCAR and the World Series of Poker have benefitted from this. Heck, even horse racing has grown in popularity in recent years. So, my question is – what needs to be done? Does the government need to take a closer look? Is there room for competition from upstart leagues the answer? Does anybody really care?


scargosun said...

The gov't need to stay O U T! I am tired of them gaining power over it. These guys make MILLIONS to be better than the other guy. They are always going to try to get away with something to make them stronger, faster or just better. The leagues should have oversight people to deal with it. Those yahoos in congress can barely form declarative sentances.

Lisa said...

what she said (up there above me)!!

If we can't have good sports, could we at least get a good sports movie? You know they're my fave ..... Babs

Superstar said...

Your question goes to such a deeper level of government.

I think the federalist's that founded out country just rolled over in their grave a wee bit! The idea is to provide as much freedom, with minimal government I thought.

Every year I see Americans becoming more socialist/communist than free...
My vote is keep the government OUT of it. Then again, Im all about legalizing drugs, and stop declaring WAR it. Tax the crap out of it, so we can pay for all that we support on the government tit....

Stolen Colon said...

Because the patriots cheated, the city of Brotherly Love lost out on a parade that is long overdue. It's quite simple. They taped our signals in the first half reviewed the tape and Tom Brady was able to audible at the line and pick apart the defense.Total bullshit.

Jeff said...

Sorry if I can't work up any righteous indignation.

We knew the 1993 Phillies were injecting (OK, Kruk injected hot dogs) and loved them anyway.

We would defend Bill Belicheat to the death if he were here. Just like we instantly loved Dykstra when he was traded from the Mets, TO when traded from SF, etc. (And didn't we lose because McNabb threw up?)

The NBA was unwatchable for over a decade, and we don't care about winning hockey as long as there's a good fight.

As PJ O'Rourke said, the founding fathers' genius was taking 100 of the country's leading numbskulls out of the private sector, where they could do actual harm.

So, what the hell, let's let the government intervene so our legislators don't do something importantly bad.

Anonymous said...

No government involvement. After sports... what's next? You can only have 1.5 kids? No thank you. All things have downward curves... we've had more important things to focus on than sports the last while.

*stepping off my soap box now*

Scott Sheaffer said...

"They taped our signals in the first half reviewed the tape and Tom Brady was able to audible at the line and pick apart the defense.Total bullshit." -From Stolen Colon

Well, the 35 minute Super Bowl half time is longer than the usual 12 minute halftimes used in the rest of the season. So let's see, according to your theory, during those 35 minutes, Bill Belichick would've had to watch an hour and a half long video of the Eagles coaches along with another hour and a half of game film. Okay, so you've got Belichick somehow watching three hours of film in only 35 minutes. Plus Belichick would have to edit that video and splice it together to synch up the signals to the corresponding plays. The signals don't help much if you don't know what the play was. Okay, now you can study the film. See, it's easy all you have to do is - - Hey!! Wait a minute! You don't have hours and hours of time to do all this during a 35 minute half time. Well, so much for the "they reviewed the signals at half time" theory.