May has been an interesting month in the world of sports, and June is shaping up to be the same. Sure, the Stanley Cup Finals are going on, the NBA finals are just starting, and baseball is nearing midseason, but that’s not what’s making it all so interesting. The really compelling thing is the media coverage, which has trended towards sensationalism more than I’ve ever seen in the past. For me, May was a watershed month. For the first time in my adult life, I looked at SportsCenter as a television last resort instead of an integral part of my television day.
I’m at my wits’ end and I don’t think I can take this anymore. Sports reporting has had little or nothing to do with actual sports for over a month. Beat writers are finding stories about sluggers canoodling with ex-strippers, dugout fistfights, and the racial impact of black guys hard-fouling white guys. Oh sure, they throw a highlight in of an actual play on ESPN or make mention that a game was played in the papers. But I haven’t been able to sit down and watch a clean, “sport first” television show since sometime in April.
Well, if that’s the evolution of coverage in this over-saturated media of ours, so be it. I have to adapt with the times. And I think the first step towards that is taking stock of the top stories. I’ve picked six that have received most of the sports coverage over the past few days, and I’m going to score them in three categories: Coverage Level, Entertainment Factor, and Sports Value. Scale of 1 to 5.