Breaking News

The US military is ready to secure new access to key bases in the Philippines New report finds US spends the most on health care but has the worst health outcomes among high-income countries The U.S. will end its COVID-19 emergency declaration on May 11 What the end of COVID-19 emergencies means in the United States Former Brazilian president, Jair Bolsonaro, requests a six-month tourist visa to the United States Bolsonaro, Brazil’s former president, has applied for a tourist visa to the US Former Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro applied for a US visa Europe Doesn’t Need The United States Anymore The US has said that Russia is violating the nuclear arms control agreement Oil rises as US recession fears ease and dollar falls

By Martin RogersFOX Sports Columnist

One of the joys of this job as a sports writer is having had the opportunity to travel far and wide over the years, meeting fans from all over the world.

The more you do it, the more you realize that those of us who love sports are mostly cut from the same cloth.

Of course, the languages ​​and accents and the actual games we follow may be different. Yes, American fans are used to paying concession prices that would make those overseas swoon. Granted, most of these coasts will never understand cricket, just as your average Belgian or South African is perplexed by the vagaries of the grill.

But rest assured, we beat to the same tunes, carry the same frustrations, want the same results and are touched by the same stories of sentimentality, whether we are an American basketball fanatic, a Brazilian football fan, a racing enthusiast German automobile, a fan of New Zealand rugby, a connoisseur of Japanese baseball, etc.

What is happening, however, is that we are working on a very different schedule, a fact highlighted by the current lull in the American sports cycle.

For much of the year, the action here is relentless and sometimes overwhelming. There is a lot of overlap, but from September until the middle of each following year, it always feels like something very important is happening.

The football season is short enough that each week of NFL action brings several games that really matter in the overall scheme of the campaign. After the Super Bowl, sporting attention turns to the Daytona 500 and the NBA All-Star Game. From there, it’s a little jump into March and all the Madness college hoops that ensue. And then to Opening Day and the Masters, then to the long NBA and NHL playoffs.

Since the Golden State Warriors (June 16) and Colorado Avalanche (June 26) hoisted their respective silverware, however, the national scene has been a bit sleepy. NBA Summer League has some entertainment value, but that’s mostly limited to analyzing early looks at the most promising rookies.

MLB All-Star entertainment provides a welcome interlude, with the unique magnificence of Shohei Ohtani the undisputed highlight Tuesday (8 p.m. ET on FOX and the FOX Sports app), along with standout talent such as Aaron Judge and Juan Soto, and inherited wellness choices Albert Pujols and Miguel Cabrera.

Once Tuesday night passes, however, the start of most NFL training camps will still be days away, with seven more blank Sundays before the journey to the final dose of fantasy football heartbreak begins.

While that may seem quiet in the United States, that’s not the case everywhere. Consider what the European fan has had to get stuck in over the past two weeks. In tennis, the French Open were quickly engulfed in Wimbledon, won respectively by a pair of male legends (Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic) and an emerging superstar and a controversial surprise on the female side (Iga Swiatek and Elena Rybakina).

In Europe, they pack it during the summer.

Last weekend, The Open Championship of golf took place in its most iconic venue and spiritual home, St. Andrews in Scotland. It was a reminder that sometimes the story is a story you don’t expect. A final round that took the form of a head-to-head showdown between crowd favorite Rory McIlroy and emerging star Viktor Hovland turned into an absolute masterclass from Australian brilliant Cam Smith, who rolled birdie after birdie on the back nine to shoot 64 and claim his first major.

If Smith moves quickly to LIV Golf, as seems likely, then the renegade league will have a bona fide young star to add to its ever-growing ranks.

Next weekend will see the conclusion of the Tour de France, the ever-popular cycling spectacle that fascinates so many Central European nations, and where an epic battle between reigning champion Tadej Pogacar and current leader Jonas Vingaard awaits the final steps.

A week after that, football will resume, with the start of the English Premier League and German Bundesliga on August 5, followed a week later by Spain’s La Liga and Italy’s Serie A.

Realistically, geography matters less and less in sports. Developments in television and streaming mean that if a sporting event is happening somewhere in the world, you can find a way to watch it without too much difficulty.

However, it is a proven fact that viewers enjoy watching what is happening in their own country. The UFC found out a few years ago when their pay-per-view numbers for US-based shows were way above those overseas, despite being designed to begin to coincide with US prime time. They were never able to figure out why.

Nothing captures how sports fans act in the name of their passion. It is a kind of disease for which, fortunately, there is no known cure.

When there is sport, everything goes well. When it’s a quiet time, like the one that’s happening in the United States right now and for a bit longer, things seem a little off. We find ourselves doing weird things, like talking about the weather or buying things we don’t need, or tackling household projects that will never be finished.

The good news is that busier times are ahead. It’s something to be grateful for, and I’m happy to remind you, but an apology is also due. This column started with the intention of providing a solution for the dead period, but there really isn’t one that we can see.

Unless you want the NBA’s discussed but still non-existent mid-season tournament to be played in July? Or for the NFL season to be extended by three weeks (good luck getting it by the Players Association) or for NASCAR to drastically cut its regular season and start the playoffs now, which wouldn’t really work.

The mission then failed. Sorry for that, and only the following as an excuse.

These are the calm days of summer. When matches aren’t scheduled, we’re all a bit out of our game.

Martin Rogers is a columnist for FOX Sports and author of the FOX Sports Insider newsletter. You can subscribe to the daily newsletter here.

Get more Major League Baseball Follow your favorites for game info, news and more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *