So will there be fans at Detroit Lions’ games if the season is played out as the National Football League hopes, or will there not?
It seems it depends on who you ask the question.
The Detroit Lions said in statement earlier this week, “Given the evolving circumstances surrounding COVID-19, contingencies are needed and will be in place. We are evaluating all facets of the game day experience, and will do what is required to maintain a safe and healthy environment at Ford Field where our fans can feel comfortable.” That sounds like a team expecting fans.
However, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer seems a bit less optimistic about that, saying this during a recent radio morning show. “We also have to (temper) their expectations and say ‘Life is going to be different.’ We’re not going to be filing stadiums this fall.”
It’ll be interesting to see what ends up happening.
ESPN’s “The Last Dance” and the Bad Boys
The ESPN series featuring Michael Jordan’s career has little importance to me, but I did make sure to watch the episodes that involved the Detroit Pistons and the “Bad Boys.”
At a time when the National Basketball Association and the Chicago Bulls wanted to see Jordan take the crown as sports top media king, the Detroit Pistons made sure that didn’t happen for a few seasons by pounding the Bulls, and Jordan, into submission while the Pistons won consecutive NBA titles. In the third episode, Jordan said “Oh, I hated them,” talking about the Pistons. “And that hate carries even to this day.”
The Pistons’ fan in me kind of likes hearing that. Possibly the greatest player in NBA history still allows the Bad Boys to have that type of power over him. It feels kind of nice.
Will there be any pro sports this spring/summer in the US?
Well, the answer of that question may already have been answered by the time anyone reads this column. NASCAR has a race scheduled at Darlington Raceway on Sunday. That will be the first of seven races over an 11-day span at two different tracks. The Ultimate Fighting Championship also has started hosting events.
It’s starting to look like other sports are going to be starting soon as well. The PGA Tour hopes to return to action on June 11 with the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial Country Club.
Getting my sports fix through old radio broadcasts
I collect Detroit Tigers radio broadcasts of old games. The oldest of these games came during the Tigers’ American League pennant winning season of 1934. Probably 66 percent of the games the Tigers win, but I do have plenty of regular season games the Tigers lose. Without some losses, that takes away some of the drama. The other day I listened to a game from a past season and the Tigers won in the bottom of the ninth. It’s silly but while listening to the game in my backyard it’s easy to treat the game as an actual contest being played at that moment. It’s not like anything changed. That Tiger team still had the same final-season record, but to me they are ‘new games’ and it’s thrilling to relive these victories.
Tomorrow’s game could include Mark Fidrych on the mound, Al Kaline at the plate or maybe Charlie Gehringer playing second base. During these times I’m glad I have these tapes.