We're Americans. We were raised on sports. We played sports. Most everyone did back when Hector was a pup. We starved for sports. When the evening paper came someone peeled off the sports section and we gobbled it up. Every box score, every article. We had baseball cards, football cards and finally basketball cards.
The marketeers threw Arnold Palmer and golf at us. We were game for a taste of the elite's sport. Tennis with Rod Laver and the stars of the 1960's barnstormed America and we were there.
From the Harlem Globetrotters zany idea of a game to the fiberglass pole vaulting bending and slinging a guy over 16 feet you could count on us.
ESPN came along and by golly we got a handle on the rules of Australian football and knew who bowler Don Weber was. We'd watch a cricket match before we'd watch the top rated TV show of the day.
Jim Brown, Gordie Howe, Jack Nicklaus, Sandy Koufax, the list of of thousands of names were stored in our brains and locked there for eternity.
Chris Evert, John McEnroe, Ralph Boston, Carl Lewis, Dorothy Hamill, Peggy Fleming, Dan Jenson, Eric Heiden and the Miracle on Ice were our cup of Tea.
While flipping channels the other night I came across one of the Khardasian shows and there was Bruce Jenner (Decathlon Olympic Gold) with his facelift stretching his skin so tight he looked like a 25 year old with his face covered in Vaseline.
Is this what it's come to? Apparently so. How and when did we become such a shallow nation? Why are our sports pages filled with the like of what glasses the Thunder big two are wearing or 5 columns of why LeBron James is the greatest player ever? Or the biggest punk?
Why is there 10 articles concerning the negative antics of the Heat to every 1 article praising the teamwork and humbleness of the Thunder?
Why is it sports news because Floyd Mayweather wants out of prison after two weeks because it's "taking away from his conditioning"? He pled guilty to beating his woman before two their kids rather than risk a trial where he could have gotten up to 34 years and he got 3 months. Now he wants out and this is sports news? Everyone in prison wants out. So what?
Why are the sports pages filled with the news of a possible fix in the Pacquiao fight? We've all known that boxing is fixed for about the past 2,000 years. The last time I paid for a pay per view in Boxing was when Cassius Clay beat Sonny Liston and that was in a movie theater for 2.00.. And to this day there are those who claim Ali won on a phantom punch. That the fight was fixed. How many of you seriously care who "wins" in boxing? A few hundred thousand out of 310 million Americans?
While it would be easy for this Native SoCal guy to be thrilled that the NHL Kings won a title, I'm not into hockey. Hockey lost me when they chose to sit out an entire season over money. Who won in that one I ask you? You can never make back the money lost in an entire season. I understand some love hockey and more power to them but for the casual fan it came to the point that most of us simply do not have the desire to keep up with those that don't care enough about their fans to avoid sitting out an entire season.
The NBA managed to avoid this by putting on a short season and the playoffs. They got lucky in that they had a semi finals with the two of the most storied teams in the league and the worst villain team of the day and the most likeable. Frankly I liked the short season. But had they sat out the playoffs I would have moved on as I did with Hockey.
Because you see this is sports problem. They priced themselves out of the range of most kids parents. Then they priced themselves out of the range of the middle class. As a Laker fan I haven't seen a game at Staples since the year they opened Staples.
So we get by with Cable and that 100.00 bill a month avg. for all the NBA I want. We get excited for the finals. But what I get excited today about is the NBA finals and the Super Bowl. No more golf, no more NASCAR, no more Tennis, no more Hockey, no more Australian rules football.
There is not enough money to chase them all anymore. And not enough real coverage these days to work up an interest. Too much garbage sports reporting and not enough real sports writers.
I'm running on empty.