What the 2018 Olympics really need

I’ll admit it.  I’ve barely watched a single moment of this year’s Winter Olympics.  Sure, I glanced at the opening ceremonies, always an eye-catcher.  I’ve oohed and aah-ed at the occasional luge wipeout and yes, Shaun White winning again is a great story.  Other than that, I haven’t intentionally flipped on one of NBC’s gazillion stations to catch up on a medal count.

I’ll attribute some of that to me being much more of a Summer Olympics guy.  I don’t luge, I don’t cross country ski and I sure as hell don’t ice dance.  When it comes to Pyeongchang, I’m as confounded as my spell check.

Back in the day, just a few decades ago, there was a little something extra that fueled the Olympic fire.  That fan was called the Cold War.

Now I’m not condoning or promoting hatred in any way.  World peace is a good thing.  But way back when, rooting against the Evil Empire (the Soviets, not the Yankees although they are equally as hate-able) made me watch.  This whole peace on earth good will towards man nonsense is bad for business.

Every story needs a good villain.  In times of peace, who are we to root against?  Last time I checked North Korea doesn’t have a bobsled team.  Or maybe they do.  I wouldn’t know.  Even Cool Runnings portrayed the Austrians as bad guys.  What these Olympics really need is a good bar fight.

I don’t mean to diminish the achievements of those athletes who have dedicated their entire lives to their craft.  I’m just suggesting picking up a sworn enemy along the way would make for a better storyline.  Would Jesse Owens’ accomplishments have been as momentous had he not thumbed his glorious, black finger at the entire Aryan race?  Exactly!

Norway.  Sweden.  Denmark.  These countries wouldn’t recognize a good conflict if it stood up and littered them with “Yo Mama” jokes.

Rocky had Ivan Drago (my second but most certainly not last Rocky IV reference of the year).  Ricky Bobby had Jean Girard.  Danny LaRusso had Johnny Lawrence.  I watch these movies over and over (and over) again because I know they’re always going to be the bad guys.  We don’t need someone to root FOR in these Olympics.  We need someone to root AGAINST!

We watched the Super Bowl this year because we wanted to see Tom Brady lose.  We watch the NBA to see LeBron fall short of Jordan’s legacy.  We are a nation of haters.

Back in the day, Reebok marketed Dan and Dave because they knew that’s what we needed.  A good rivalry.

Give me a good story of how a particular Danish skier ran off with the girlfriend of an Austrian competitor and I just might tune in.

Until then, it’s all snow.

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24 Replies to “What the 2018 Olympics really need”

  1. I’m not a Communist, Archie… er, I mean Dubsy. I just have liberal leanings and tendencies.

    Here’s something fun for ya’. Try calling someone who doesn’t really know what a communist is a communist in this day and age. It’s quite amusing as they don’t really know how to respond.

  2. There has been a little fighting in hockey. They call it “extra curricular activity”, which is not quite what I would say that is!

  3. I’ve tried to watch it but can’t stay on it for more than 30 min or so. Like you, there’s 2 things going against it:

    A) we don’t know these fine athletes and
    B) I can only see snow and ice for so long without needing snow goggles to watch tv

  4. True story: I know a guy who wanted to start his own political party. This is another guy with “liberal-leaning tendencies” as you say. He wanted to call it the “National Socialist Worker’s Party.”

    I told him he needed to re-think that name. He asked me why. Then I had to explain who the National Socialists were.


  5. Al…

    I’ll be honest.

    I thought a few more people would stand up and say “SportsChump! What are you talking about? The Winter Olympics bla bla bla!” These athletes try their hearts out. How can you not watch?”

    From the looks of these comments so far, that hasn’t happened yet.

    NBC has done a horrible job marketing the athletes and these Olympics. Are they just expecting to lose money on their investment?

  6. Mar…

    We’re all aware of your stance on “the extra-curriculars,” he he.

    But yea, with the pros not playing this time around, hockey took a huge hit.

    That was something that at least the meat and potatoes sports fan would watch.

    If not for Shaun White and Lindsay Vonn, I can’t say I know of any American athletes going over to represent.

    I’ll say I’m partially to blame for that… but so is NBC.

    At least give me some Bob Costas impetigo to look at.

  7. Dubs…

    It’s good to keep friends around that you can make fun of. I have a few of those myself.

    The only thing less profitable than starting your own political party would be starting your own sports book.

  8. As you well know I’m a Florida boy. What the hell do I know from winter sports. Hockey still evades me. Good luck to America. It looks like they’re going to need it. USA,USA ,USA!

  9. Boo Communism.

    Rooting for the US in spirit, but honestly I haven’t watched a second of it.

  10. Chris, I was a big, big fan of the Winter Olympics back in the day. I can’t tell you why I haven’t even turned it on yet this time around – I even watched a lot of World Cup skiing (as usual) in the weeks leading up to the Games. I’m one of those few college basketball sickos who watch it from November on so I think I just started to enjoy the hoops that much more as I got older. I do agree there isn’t as much “hate” involved now than when the “Miracle On Ice” went down. If the nukes start flying that might get my attention. Might. After all, March is but a few days away!

  11. The new All Star format made for a good game anyway.

    Not sure how I feel about not having the East vs West, but the game itself was the most competitive I’ve seen in awhile. I suppose anything that gets these guys from sleepwalking through the game and not playing any defense translates to an improvement.

  12. So SportsChump…

    You’re saying a communist is MORE than someone that responds with “who cares?” when questioned over who may win the Super Bowl?

  13. God Bless March, Burnsy.

    Again, I’m all for competition. I really have to blame NBC for a lack of marketing here. Not that anyone watches NBC ever since Seinfeld went off the air.

    But the network invested millions of dollars to air this product.

    Market it.

  14. Bleed…

    I’ve always found the all-star game entertaining.

    It is, after all, the best batch of basketball talent we have on the planet.

    Who was the other guard that Iverson went all apeshit with when the East was undermanned and they poured in a bunch to bring the conference a victory?

    East is East. West is West. If there’s an imbalance, let ’em fight it out.

    To the victors go the spoils.

  15. http://www.nba.com/history/all-star/2001#/

    I was snowboarding in Big Bear that weekend so I was pretty hammered. I don’t even recall Marbury playing, let alone hitting a couple of 3’s….But I sure as hell remember A.I. being completely unstoppable as usual.

    The Answer to this day is probably my favorite non-Lakers player ever. The only two that even come close are MJ and Stockton….Dude had his share of issues with practice…(Yes, we talkin’ bout PRACTICE yet again), but there’s no questioning his effort once the game started. Kid was a fucking warrior between the lines.

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