When all this ends — and it will end — how grateful will a desperate sports fan be to finally have normalcy in the world of sports?
Let us count the ways:
— Sportsnet can bring back Don Cherry to spew his absurdities — daily, even — and I wouldn’t care.
— Those dumb National Football League and Canadian Football League players can do all those silly choreographed end-zone celebrations they want and there wouldn’t be a single complaint from me.
— Never, ever again will I have to watch a replay of a ‘classic’ game played last year, or last month, or several years ago, and try to pretend I can’t remember the final result. (Exception: Will never get tired of watching Game 6 of the 1995 World Series, when my Atlanta Braves beat the Cleveland Indians 1-0 — thank you, Tom Glavine — to win a World Series for the first time since 1957).
— Booth reviews … coaches’ challenges. Bring ’em on. As long as the game is live. Will never complain again about games being lengthened by replay delays. At least for a year.
— When the live golf telecasts begin and the announcing crew spends at least 10 minutes reviewing how Tiger Woods has been doing — even if he’s in a four-way tie for 54th place and zero chance of contending — I won’t complain. I know they’re bound to get to live golf within a couple of moments, instead of the current situation — a couple of months (hopefully).
— Gulp! I’d even agree to watch a half-hour Sportscentre hosted by Kate Beirness — as long as live sports were involved, even though during ordinary times she’s an immediate channel-changer for me.
— Bring on local sports, no matter how horrible the weather conditions. Thirty-five below with a nasty northern wind? Not a problem. If my local hockey team has a home game — a live home game — it’ll be straight to the arena’s box office for me.
— Nightly sportscasts on TSN — for good reason sarcastically named the Toronto Sports Network by angry Western Canadians — can broadcast all the Leafs, Blue Jays, Raptors and Argos reports they want for six straight months and, as long as a few other ‘live’ sports results are interspersed, we can live with it.
Live sports, no matter what negatives accompany them, will be wholly embraced. Because, of course, that will mean that COVID-19 will be a thing of the past.
• Dwight Perry of the Seattle Times: “Hated AFC North rivals Pittsburgh and Baltimore agreed to a rare trade recently— the first between the teams this century — bringing defensive end Chris Wormley to the Steelers. So see, folks, there is still hope for peace in the Middle East.”
• Dwight Perry again: “Hall of Fame goaltender Dominik Ha?ek is mulling a run for president in his native Czech Republic. Morning-line favourite for his campaign slogan, of course, is: The Puck Stops Here.”
• Omaha comedy guy Brad Dickson: “The 2020 college football season may be cancelled due to the need for social distancing. Here’s the ironic thing: in the Big Ten you can stay six feet away from your opponent and still be called for Targeting.”
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