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Brady rips pants playing golf

How will the virus change face of sports?

The misery tied to COVID-19 may actually change the way sports fans look at professional million-dollar players. Fans may really start to think, amid the misery now being felt around the world, why are we paying so much to watch adults play a kid’s game, with so many of them raking in multi-million-dollar paychecks? I know the unemployed fans are going to feel that way.

For the unemployed in the U.S., estimated to peak around 20 percent this year by more than a handful of respected sources, there won’t be enough money to afford those $150 cheap seats at the NFL stadium, if indeed there is a season this year (I’m betting there won’t be a season this fall). In fact, earlier this month, Goldman Sachs warned that the unemployment number will peak at 35 percent either this year or next. Will the MLB sport a season this summer with stadiums full of fans who aren’t worried about viral spread? I’m betting no. Even a shortened season.

Scratch that stadium scenario. If the NFL opens up the stadiums next fall, for example, the fans will show up, and then later, show up at the hospital if they get unlucky, in need of a ventilator. You’ve seen some of the NFL fans. It’s 10 below zero, but many of the fans are shirtless, painted in the team’s colors, hair dyed purple, guzzling their 20th 16-ounce plastic cup full of $10 tasteless Bud Light. Even with a 35-percent unemployment rate, there will always be enough people with money to pack a stadium. The trouble for the NFL, even before the pandemic, most of the NFL stadiums last season were empty relative to better times.

Seriously, though, this whole virus thing is changing the way most of us think about, well, most things. When the real serious stuff starts to happen (e.g., almost 100,000 dead from COVID-19 in the U.S. with many more deaths predicted to follow), the petty things, like pro sports, that most people use to live by, will slip by the wayside. That, I think, is a good thing. For too many years, pro athletes have been hailed as demi-gods, heroes; at least the truly spectacular athletes like Tiger Woods, Wayne Gretzky, Tom Brady, Michael Jordan, etc. They were, however, simply born with enough superb talent at a particular sport, practiced their craft, and made it to number one in their respective sport. In sports, as in music, a person can practice 24/7 and never end up spectacular. It always takes the talent as well, and that’s nothing more than an accident of birth, genetics, if you like.

Besides, why call any athlete a hero? Did he or she just run into a burning building to rescue a baby? No? Then quit with the hero crap. Please.

At the pro-sports level, even the guys, women, too, who aren’t number one are paid a lot of money. Granted, for athletes who play most pro sports, their lifetime career is usually less than 10 years, I’m guessing, unless you’re Tom Brady, so their money-making potential doesn’t last long, but even the average players are making more than most Americans make in a lifetime. Meaning, I think, this virus is going to cause some hard feelings on the part of Joe Six-Pack when it comes to guys who play pro sports and then still want to gripe about social issues. Just play the game and shut up already. If I wanted to hear about politics, I’d turn to cable news.

With the PGA Tour stuck in neutral, thanks to COVID, perhaps the biggest sporting event this past weekend was a charity event that had Tiger Woods and Tom Brady battling Phil Mickelson and Peyton Manning. Can any one say, “Who gives a…?” To which I would say, I fully agree. Who cares? The one good thing that came out of it, two actually, was that the event raised approximately $20 million for coronavirus relief. How that money will be doled out, I don’t yet know. I don’t even know who won the tourney, nor do I care.

You know what the big news was? Tom Brady split the seat of his pants while bending over to retrieve his ball from the cup. Thankfully, based on the photos I’ve seen, Gisele’s husband was wearing underwear.

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