Christmastime always brings back fond memories of my late father. Back in the early 1960s, my dad bought me a subscription to Sports Illustrated for the first time. I was thrilled. On the cover of each issue were the legends who might as well have been from another planet. There was Bart Starr, Bobby Orr, Wilt Chamberlain, Peggy Fleming, Johnny Unitas, etc. On the inside, the first few pages were always dedicated to unbelievable pictures like you had never seen before. It involved the intense battles of competitors that sprung to life and always ended up carefully cut out and plastered to my bedroom walls until the tape turned yellow and cracked.
Then there were the articles, which were detailed, intricate, and riveting tales of the arduous tasks faced by sporting icons and the travails of the eventual winners and losers. In essence, the “What was“ of the sports world. Not anymore.
Nowadays it has become the unending, unnerving and irritating world of the “What if.” Almost every, but not all, talking head on ESPN Radio now spends endless hours pontificating on the “What if” theme. In fact, Mike and Mike in the Morning might as well be called “What if in the Morning.“
They are constantly juxtaposing a never ending set of scenarios as to not what happened and the consequences, but to the “What if this were to happen?” or the “What if this doesn't happen?” And it bit them once again in the proverbial butt the other day when the supposed second coming of Sandy Koufax, Cliff Lee, pulled a fast one, shunning both the Yankees and the Rangers and signomg with the Philadelphia Phillies.
This happened after weeks and weeks of speculation by Mike and Mike, (and a boatload of others I might add), as to where he was going, for how much, and most importantly for how long. Can you say none of the above? He went with less money, fewer years and a mystery team for the most part that nobody really considered. So much for the “What if“ theory.