Monday, October 20, 2014

A Little Food For Thought On A Monday Morning...

In 2001, Barry Bonds, a player in his late 30's who had come back from many injuries, including a career threatening one, broke one of his sport's most hallowed records.
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Bonds was vilified; his motives questioned, his work ethic dismissed, rumors and hearsay reported as fact.  His word was not taken.  The media made up its mind and demanded asterisks, or worse, just decided the record didn't count. 

In 2014, Peyton Manning, a player in his late 30's who had come back from many injuries, including a career threatening one, broke one of his sport's most hallowed records.
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Manning was celebrated;  his motives commended, his work ethic lauded, any questions about him was dismissed as sour grapes and hate.  His word was taken as gospel.  The media made up its mind and decided that he was everything right with a sport where so much has gone wrong recently. 


Am I missing something?  This can't just be a black/white thing, can it?  Is it just the way PEDs are viewed in their respective sports?  I mean, Manning plays a game where HGH is ingested like so much candy, so are we to believe that he came back from an injury that would cripple most people through only a lot of hard work and a good diet?  And all any hack writer can ever talk and/or joke about is the size of Barry Bonds' head.  Have you fucking seen Peyton Manning's head?!?!?

The fucking thing doesn't even fit inside his helmet!

Look, I am no Barry Bonds apologist.  I am a baseball hipster, I hated Barry Bonds way way way before it was cool.   But why has no one even questioned Peyton about the comeback from his injury?  Why has no one pointed out that Manning is playing as well or better at age 38 than just about any other quarterback ever (and that after a catastrophic injury)?  Most QBs are absolutely finished by age 36-37 - Unitas, Montana, Marino, Fouts, the list goes on and on.  Yet Peyton keeps breaking records and playing better than he ever has and all the media can do is fall over themselves to fawn over his greatness.  If no one cares about PEDs in football, why are they the end of the fucking world in baseball?  I feel like I'm taking crazy pills.


Zippy Zappy said...

PED's in baseball are a big deal because the media keeps telling us it is. I think the New York Post puts A-Rod's face on their cover with some negative headline about steroid use five times a week. And we, being the mindless sheep that we are, think it's actually important when in reality it doesn't affect our lives in any way shape or form.
Essentially it's like how celebrities coming out and publicly saying they're gay are still considered a big deal. It shouldn't be, but it is because we're a horrible society.

jacobmrley said...

Good points all, ZZ, but why is football different? Is it because sports writers know the NFL is king and don't want to ruffle the feathers where their bread is buttered (though all the domestic violence coverage shows that might not be the case)? Or is it because we just assume to play football you need to take PEDs? I wish I could wrap my head around it. Plus, and it is a whole different part of the argument, basketball seems to get the same pass as football. Have you seen some of the dudes in the NBA? You wanna tell me those bodies are all spinach and workout regimen? Just drives me nuts.

Zippy Zappy said...

Well for one thing the NFL (and NBA and NHL) never do anything. I don't think they've publicly stated whether they're for or against performance enhancers. As long as asses are in seats and they get their paychecks from companies looking to advertise their products every five Goddamn seconds, they're all good.
"If the head honchos and media don't care about it, why should we?" - Sheep

Meanwhile the MLB has made a huge ordeal about removing steroids that in hindsight just looks like a PR move that turned on itself.
"Hey, the head of the MLB and the media are making a big deal about it, so it must be a big deal!" - Sheep

The double standard is frustrating, but it's also an interesting study on how much the media and sports industry thinks North Americans who watch these sports are stupid and lack perspective.

jacobmrley said...

ZZ, the point you made about baseball and their reaction to the PEDs is spot on. If they had just deflected and obscured things the way the other leagues do back in 1998, a million hot takes would have died on the vine.