Categorized | Sports

TRAVIS’ PRO TOUR: April 20th, 2012

Spring spectator sports don’t generate excitement

Travis Marmon

Although I am wrapping up my second year as a Sports Editor for the Voice, I would be lying if I said that I had a deep appreciation for all athletics. While spring is the best time of year to be active, it is an odd time for me from a sports fan perspective. Football is in the middle of its offseason, yet I’m more interested in the upcoming NFL Draft than anything else. The NBA is quickly approaching the playoffs, which are always a blast, but the lockout shortened the season and eliminated much of the build-up and excitement for it.

As a Detroiter, I should be in sports heaven right now. The Tigers are one of the most exciting teams in baseball after acquiring Prince Fielder to round out a fearsome hitting lineup that complements the pitching of reigning AL MVP Justin Verlander.

The Red Wings, as always, are in the playoffs (although they may be eliminated by the time this is printed), following a season in which they won a record 23 consecutive home games. This is a fantastic time of year to be into both of these teams, but unfortunately I have difficulty watching either of their respective sports.

If you see me around campus checking my phone, I’m most likely looking at the scores for one or both teams, but they’re never on my television as anything more than background noise. I fully support all of my local sports and am genuinely glad when they do well, but baseball has never been able to hold my attention as a spectator sport, and hockey never clicked with me despite its most elite franchise playing less than an hour from my hometown.

Thus, I am left in a strange position for the time being. As compelling as I find the NFL Draft, it is almost a foregone conclusion that the first two picks will be Andrew Luck to the Indianapolis Colts and Robert Griffin III to the Washington Redskins.

The Lions, finding themselves in the unfamiliar territory of picking outside of the top 15 and having resigned 21 of 22 starters from last season, will most likely draft an offensive lineman or a cornerback. That would be nice, but far from exciting.

Now I must call upon the NBA playoffs to carry me through until the Summer Olympics (during which I will assuredly watch more handball than baseball).

The Western Conference in particular will be my focus, as the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Los Angeles Clippers are both fast-paced, entertaining young teams with fantastic players like Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook, Blake Griffin and Chris Paul.

They will be tasked with taking down the west’s old guard in the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Lakers. Or maybe a team like the Memphis Grizzlies or the Denver Nuggets could surprise everybody, just like the Dallas Mavericks did last year.

The Eastern Conference is rather boring. Once again, the big storyline will be whether or not LeBron James and the Miami Heat can take home the first of the many titles that they have promised. Whether they do or they don’t, it will be annoying.

My favorite player to watch in the NBA, Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls, has been battling injury all season. While the Bulls have done great without him, it’s just not as entertaining to watch Luol Deng or Joakim Noah take over a game.

So that’s my lament on the spring sports season. I don’t mean to be a wet blanket for all you baseball and hockey fans, but no matter how exciting things may be for you, I won’t be devoting my full attention.


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