|It’s the best time of the year in sports|
|Written by Tawni Ricketts, Daily Vidette Columnist|
|Tuesday, 31 January 2012 18:47|
The holidays are over. We rang in the New Year. Sunshine is limited and chilly temperatures are abundant. School has kicked into full-gear again, and spring break just seems too far away. Honestly, what good are the months of January and February anyway?
While these glum months are dreaded by many, they bear some of the most anticipated, exciting times for sports fans of every caliber. But which sport holds the biggest event of the “melancholy months?" Let’s break it down.
The Association of Surfing Professionals world tour kicks off at the end of February with the Quiksilver Pro in Australia. Although one of my personal favorite sports, surfing just hasn’t quite acquired the lofty fan base that football, baseball, and basketball has, thus accounting for its ranking as the seventh out of eight most anticipated sporting events this time of year.
While past attendance records show a greater turn out for the Australian Open as compared to the Winter X Games, the popularity of Action Sports has grown tremendously in the past couple of years.
After taking into account the death of freestyle skier Sarah Burke and the dedication of the X Games to her thereof, in addition to the increasing popularity and idolizing of snowboarder Shaun White (who scored the first-ever perfect 100 on the SuperPipe on Sunday), the 2012 X Games were looked forward to by more than that of the first stop of the Grand Slam events, thus placing the Australian Open and the 2012 Winter X Games as the sixth and fifth most anticipated sporting events, respectively, of the melancholy months.
While appealing less to sports fans who like serious competition, the Pro Bowl provides a fun atmosphere for not only the fans, but the NFL’s best athletes as they bond with otherwise rival competitors. However, the Pro Bowl seemingly contradicts the rough and competitive nature of football in an effort to prevent injuries, therefore directing fans’ attention away from the event.
Nonetheless, the event hosts numerous star-athletes, thus attracting attention from all angles and placing the Pro Bowl as the fourth most anticipated sporting event.
Nearing the top of the list, the NBA All-Star Weekend comes in as the third most sought out event during the glum months.
With special events like the Three-Point Contest, Slam Dunk Contest, and the NBA All-Star Game, among other events that allow youngsters to intermingle with other fans and even NBA players, the NBA All-Star weekend is a fun-filled and interactive time that fans of all ages look forward to.
Finally, we’ve reached the two biggest sporting events of the so-called melancholy months, with the anticipation of baseball season swooping in at number two.
I think it’s safe to say that people begin looking forward to America’s favorite pastime as soon as the World Series ends. With the excitement and curiosity that trading, contract formations, and terminations provide, the sport of baseball never gets old. Pitchers and catchers report to spring training in less than a month. Excitement and eagerness are increasing daily. Not to mention, baseball games mean baseball weather.
Now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for … the most anticipated and widely recognized sporting event that these undervalued months present is … the Super Bowl! Surprise!
Whether your team made the cut or not, whether you even follow football or not, there’s a good chance you’ll be tuned in to the big game because of the following reasons: 1. You are clearly a sports fan…you’re reading this in the “Sports” section of the newspaper. 2. Your guilty pleasure is the half-time show. 3. The entertainment value of the multi-million dollar commercials are reason enough. 4. You’re a big fan of chicken wings, nachos, cheesy potatoes, pizza pockets and Super Bowl themed cookie-cakes.
Super Bowl XLVI is less than one week away, and while many are still mourning the ousting of the Green Bay Packers from their second consecutive Super Bowl game, I’m sure they’re still anticipating those tasty traditional Super Bowl treats.