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.
I live in New York City. Much is made here, on the back pages of the two notable tabloid newspapers [i.e., The New York Daily News (motto: “New York’s Hometown Paper”) and the New York Post (motto: “DAILY NEWS SUCKS COMMIE BALLS”)] of the annual “Subway Series” of six games between the New York Mets and the New York Yankees. For those of you who’ve been resting in healing blue light since Thursday, the first half–the Shea half, the better half– of the series has now been played, and the boys from Flushing are up 2-1 on the hapless Bronx Bombers. Here’s a brief recap:
Game 1, Friday: Mets are awesome.
Game 2, Saturday: Mets are awesome, and Robinson Cano has apparently been replaced with one of those zombies from Resident Evil, except the zombies are usually better at playing second base than this.
Game 3, Sunday: Yet another rookie started for the Yankees. Mets were obviously tired from a long night of awesome-ing with Andy Samberg after he awesomed it up on SNL.
The winner of the Subway Series gets featured on the back page of both the Post and the News, unless it’s the Mets, then you have to flip through the classifieds and squint to see the coverage.
Anyway, all that’s ancient history now, if awesome ancient history. You don’t come here for the breaking sports news you might get from, say, ESPN or Sportsline or Amazon. You come here for hard-hitting, in-depth analysis (or because you’re that creepy guy who punched “gil meche ninja fishing” into Google).
So let’s talk about-and by ‘talk about’ I mean HIT HARD, IN DEPTH- the issues of public transportation and sporting venues and interleague rivalries. Read More