Sports Fans, Travel Back to the 90's
This time of quarantine hits all of us in different ways. Some find themselves homeschooling, though they never wanted to attempt to teach their own children. Some feel lost without their movie theater, bar or restaurant times.
And a large portion of the world misses sports.
I grew up with sports in my family, especially as my grandfather worked for the Dodgers, and he was on a first name basis with many of the big baseball players in his day. My dad and uncles even tell us stories of riding in the Dodger’s plane with the MLB players, with strict orders not to bother them.
Personally, now, my husband and I love hockey, and before we had kids, we would plan our nights around watching the games that our favorite team was scheduled to play in. We still watch, but now only as time permits around their sports and extracurricular activities.
Suffice it to say that I understand the thrill and the appeal of sports. There is something gripping about not knowing the outcome, but wanting so desperately for your team to win. You hover at the edge of your seat when games are close, feel an extra high of victory when your team wins, and have to shake off the crushing disappointment when your team loses.
But now all sports are on pause. Possibly a long pause.
What could possibly fill that void?
I think I came up with a solution, but we will have to test it to see if it works to sooth our itch for live sports.
Did you know that there are people on YouTube, who for whatever reason, maybe for this very moment, have seasons of sports from the 1990s?
For example, look up Lisa Hardy on YouTube.
This person has literally no videos of her own, but the playlists are amazing for a desperate sports fan. She has playlists of 30–40 games of many different seasons and sports from the 1990s, including NHL, NBA, MLB, and NFL.
Personally, I don’t know the outcome of every NHL game from 1993 or any other year of the 90’s. I could literally choose any year, watch the videos and be completely surprised at the outcome.
If nothing on her page strikes you it is easy enough to search the league you want, “season” and “playlist”, and you are likely to find someone that has say, the NFL season playlist from 1996, if you look for it.
Here is my pitch:
Pick a season, from her playlists or others, and tell your friends. Start to watch through the same playlist together, the same nights, rooting for whatever team you hope will win.
Honor system, don’t cheat and look it up. Legitimately pretend that you have no way of knowing the outcome.
Maybe even watch at the same time, texting or face-timing about the amazing plays together.
It can’t replace live sports, or cheering for the big players you know now, but you can learn the top players of that era, and enjoy long forgotten amazing plays. You can compare how the game was played then, compared to now, for better or for worse.
Learning to adapt to the new normal is where our world finds itself right now.
We honestly have no idea when life will truly return to normal. It sure doesn’t look like anytime soon.
Next year will likely be a regular season for all our sports again, but for now, fresh sports are on the distant horizon, so why not try some vintage sports until then?
When you are out of lemons, and anything fresh, go pop open a jar of pickles.
An old sports season might not be what you wanted to watch right now, but it might just be better than waiting till fall.
As for me, I think my husband and I will start to watch through the 1993 season of NHL. Picked at random, perhaps it will be a good year for hockey.
As a side note, I have a suggestion for the sports channels too.
If anyone from the big sports channels reads this, and are looking for something to put on the screen that fans will watch, I think that fans would get a big kick out of some e-sports played by the actual players.
I imagine two quarantined players, one from each team, getting on their devices, and we can watch them battle out their sport on their devices, each representing their team.
It can’t replace a real season, but it can bring fans satisfaction of watching their team beat their virtual rival, with a bonus of getting to see their favorite players again, even if they aren’t allowed on a court, field or rink.
Think of the viewers that each e-sports battle will bring in for fans, desperate for any taste of sports. Just a thought.
As a disclaimer, I realize that the lack of sports is of minimal importance these days.
The seemingly worldwide quarantine serves the crucial purpose of saving lives. Keeping players and fans from sharing a dangerous, malicious virus with each other is worth this odd pause from regularly scheduled events.
I was looking forward to watching playoff hockey (even if my team didn’t perform well this year), and my husband had tickets to the opening baseball game this month. Others are missing races, fights or basketball, etc.
We sports fans, in no way, think that the sports are more important than the lives that are at stake during this pandemic. But as much as I wanted to help parents who might be lost as they find themselves at home with kids, I wanted to find a bandaid fix for myself and others who might be trying to find something to fill this time.
So I offer vintage sports, from seasons long enough ago that we don’t know the outcomes (without looking them up), but recent enough that the games have been put online. I hope it helps get through this time.
We will find out together.