Letters: This looks like a long timeout for the sports world
Props to Bill Plaschke for his realistic view that sports may not be played again in 2020. We survived without any pro football in Los Angeles for 20 years, so I have no doubt that we can survive without a MLB or NBA champion this year. We should be more concerned with the local retailer who may or may not be able to reopen his or her business when we are given the thumbs-up to resume some sense of normalcy again.
Finally a sports journalist, Bill Plaschke, tells it like it is, and writes about the hard truth. No sports in 2020. He becomes the voice of reason and common sense, unlike commissioners and owners who continue to float these alternative realities on how we can salvage the season.
I understand why America loves and needs its sports for a myriad of reasons, but really, we are living in a pandemic whose season is longer than 162 games and bigger than the Super Bowl.
I think it was commendable that the Lakers executives will take a 20% pay cut to help the lower salaried workers. I wonder if they’ve considered asking the players to do the same? Since many of them make more than $10 million a year, I would bet a 20% savings on their salaries would be in the vicinity of about $50 million total, and can you imagine if that money went to our health care workers? Wouldn’t that be something! I think that would be a much better gesture than simply seeing tweets of their workouts at home.
Here’s a way to allow the NBA fans to participate in a sequestered playoff series. Set up a fan communication system so the fans can funnel all of their cheering voices from their cellphones into a central on-site sound system amplified in the playoff arena.
Jeanie, would you mind giving Adam Silver a call on this?
Rather than have games decided by who can jack the most balls out of a stadium if a game is tied after 10 innings, how about a more nuanced display of hitting prowess? Have a selected number of batters from each team try to hit the ball up the alleys or flare shots into gaps in the outfield. Rather than live fielders, place cardboard cutouts of fielders in their positions on the field and use them to determine who makes the best use of the space available. Move the “fielders” around after each batter to provide more of a challenge. I’m sure there are other variables that could be introduced to make it more entertaining.
Would’ve loved to be in the room when someone suggested that all MLB teams gather in a bubble in Arizona and play games there. I wouldn’t have just fallen out of my chair laughing, they would’ve had to give me a sedative because I wouldn’t have stopped laughing. Enough of this absolute stupid talk. It’s not going to happen.
Arizona will freeze over before 30 MLB teams play regular-season games there outside in triple-digit heat.
Bill Gates said recently, “Until you’re widely vaccinated, mass gatherings may not come back at all.” Gov. Gavin Newsom said that he doesn’t believe his state’s three NFL teams will be playing in front of fans come September. Maybe when sports come back, computers can be used to put fans in the empty seats. Hollywood uses CGI to make movies entertaining, so maybe CGI will make sports entertaining too. What have we got to lose?
I noticed that Spectrum is replaying Game 1 of the 1988 World Series: the “Kirk Gibson Affair.” Because I’m riding out the pandemic in a foreign country, some 10 hours ahead in time from Los Angeles, it will show here at 4 a.m. Even though I’ve watched this game countless times and I’m reasonably sure I remember the ending, after reading Uncle Bill’s latest gloom-and-doom predictions for the current and upcoming major sports seasons (OK, he may have a point this time), I’ve already set my alarm. Desperate times call for desperate measures.
(currently in Jerusalem)
One group that stands to benefit from the COVID-19 crisis are the cheaters from Houston. Much of the anger and vitriol that would have been directed the Astros’ way has now been greatly diffused by the shortened (and possibly canceled) season and the wider concerns about the pandemic. Their ride will be much softer now.
Good old days
Thanks for the flashback to the 1995 UCLA championship team. I enjoyed Bob Myers referencing the Tulsa game. I remember watching UCLA’s awful performance against Tulsa in the dive bar down the street from where I worked downtown, and thinking that if it sparked a championship run the next year it would be worth it. I felt so strongly that the ’94-’95 team would do something special that I saved ticket stubs from every game that year … for the first time in my life. I’ve still got ’em.
Chris Smith had one great game and 30 average games for UCLA last season. He had a supremely underwhelming three-year career as a collegian and now he thinks he will be a successful NBA player? Who on earth is advising these delusional kids into thinking that they are ready for professional basketball?
It could not possibly be Mick Cronin, who by coaching him last year, would have pulled out all of his hair if he had any. Allowing a shaky and underdeveloped kid like this to be thrown to the wolves of professional sports is, at the very least, an act of parental malpractice.
William David Stone
As a longtime Dodgers fan, I was very excited when I saw fans having DirecTV would be able to see the Dodgers, should the season begin. So I immediately called Frontier, my cable supplier. No, they had no plans to carry the Dodgers. Not only that, they chose yesterday to announce that MLB-TV was now too expensive to carry.
As Frontier drops one entertainment source after another, the Dodgers, the Lakers, MLB, surely they would be reducing their charges to customers since they were no longer paying for these feeds. No, but they helpfully gave me the link where I could watch MLB baseball on my computer.
If The Times insists on mentioning each day what Dodgers games would have been played, then let me be the first to complain about how Dave Roberts would have used, misused or not used Kenley Jansen in those games. I would have been outraged.
Find real heroes
The death of any young person, particularly in the prime of their life, can be deemed a tragedy. Thus, the death of Kobe Bryant was tragic. And, yes he was a skilled and famous basketball player. Yes, he had other attributes that may have blossomed if he lived on. I have nothing against him.
Now, in the middle of a world and national health crisis you tell us that the masses are lifted again and that “you can’t quarantine Kobe Bryant,” according to Bill Plaschke, all because Mr. Bryant was nominated to be in the Hall of Fame for basketball. This ode to a fallen “hero” is ridiculous, out of place, and meaningless to those of us who put sport in its place and realize that the real heroes are not those who convert athletic talent into billions of dollars, but those committed to a meaningful life of help without billions, without a plethora of newspaper coverage, such as those helping out in the health crisis, those who fight for America, those of us who served society with meaningful lives in so many ways.
Mr. Plaschke’s words and your placement of them as a front-page story does nothing for millions of people in relation to the real problems and issues of the world. Sorry, but you are living an illusion and foisting it on the rest of us.
Terrific anthology of great books on sports, although a few more on baseball wouldn’t hurt. So I’d like to suggest two additions: “Fathers Playing Catch With Sons: Essays on Sport (Mostly Baseball),” which the L.A. Times (in 1986?) called “Dazzling,” by the late poet and essayist Donald Hall, and “This Side of Cooperstown: An Oral History of Major League Baseball in the 1950’s” by the poet and baseball historian Laurence Moffi.
A thank you to the Sports staff for scratching their heads and coming up with enough material to keep readers busy through at least the All Star break (which will be when?).
Rancho Mission Viejo
See ewe later?
Todd Gurley? Brandin Cooks?
I wonder if Jared Goff has spoken to his realtor lately?
Biggest icon in L.A. sports history? No matter the outcome of the vote, this lifetime L.A. sports fan will always see Eric Dickerson as an Indianapolis Colt and Steve Garvey as a San Diego Padre.
So last week Bob Sands of La Habra told us all how he used to be a Dodgers fan but because he could not see home games for the last six years he is now a “loyal” Angels fan.
Bob, you were never a true Dodgers fan, but rather someone masquerading as one. You are just someone looking to have a shorter drive to home games to see “your” team playing. I can’t fault you for rooting for a team with the best player in the game, but true fans stand by their menno matter what the circumstances are.
I do wish to congratulate you, though, for seeing “your” Kansas City Chiefs, Washington Nationals, St. Louis Blues and Toronto Raptors win the most recent championships in their sport.
How can we connect the facts of having no sports to report on while many are in the midst of celebrating two religious holidays? I suggest that the Times sportswriters write a column about the careers of Moses Malone and Luke Easter.
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