Sunday, October 07, 2007

Weekend sports update

MLB Playoffs. I love watching baseball in the mornings, a habit that started during my senior year in college. Baseball's actually perfect for when you're doing something else, whether it's preparing (and eating) breakfast, doing reports for school, checking email, or whatever else. My last sem in LB, when I only had a couple of subjects left, was a very lazy one. My mornings were free, and I had the house mostly to myself because my roommates were off doing crazy things like going to class, so I usually started my day watching ESPN (back then the channel had a ballgame on every day). Breakfast consisted of whatever I could find in the kitchen or in the fridge, whether it's leftover dinner, hotdogs, stale bread, or ice cream. I loved having ice cream for breakfast. I loved college.

This season, I think ESPN signed a deal with the NY Yankees' broadcast network YES, so they showed mostly Yankee games. It was probably good for them as it's probably cheaper than a deal they would have signed with MLB's national carriers in the US, but I'm a Red Sox fan, so I watched a lot less baseball this year than I would have. But now it's the playoffs and ESPN is showing every game, so I could finally see all the best teams at play, and I finally get to watch the players and the teams that I've been reading about on Deadspin all these months.

That's how I spent my past few mornings. Breakfast was still whatever I could find in the fridge, but there's no ice cream this time. I didn't bother getting ice cream during my last trip to the grocery a couple of weeks ago. Big mistake.

Will to Win. As per our tradition, I went out with my buddies to Megamall this morning to watch the Pac fight at the cinema. It's always a recipe for fun, even though there were only four of us who made it this time. Between the nervous excitement in the atmosphere in the theater and your buddies around you who are ready to make corny jokes (and laugh wholeheartedly at the same corny jokes), it's really hard not to have a blast.

Rexona had a tie-up with Solar All-Access, so they had all these gimmicks inside the theater for the fight. They provided round girls for the event, and they started doing their thing from the very first fight (a dark match that wasn't on TV). When the round girl first held up the round number, the bored crowd, majority of whom was male, hooted and hollered at the girl. By the fourth or fifth round of the fight, the crowd had become tired of it, but the idea was lost on my friend Oliver, who sat beside me. He carried on cheering and clapping (alone, very loudly) everytime the round girl walked past the front, up until the end of the first fight.

Just before the start of the main event, Rexona decided to have another gimmick, this time bringing a cheering squad (complete with drums) to pep up the crowd. The problem was, the cheerleaders were male, just like in their ad campaign, and while it's a funny idea, everyone in the theater had a hard time looking at the squad as they did their routine. I was just thankful that it was short.

As for the card itself, we all enjoyed the undercard matches, but were a bit disappointed with the main event. Barrera fought not to lose, while Pacquiao looked (relatively, for him) listless, probably because he'd been spending more time with Ara Mina than with Freddie Roach. Hey, I'm happy he won, but he didn't looked far from being the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world.

(I complain, but as soon as I got home after lunch, I caught most the delayed telecast on GMA.)

UAAP Finals. Like most of my friends who aren't from La Salle, I was rooting for UE, mostly because of that unwritten rule that if you're a basketball fan and didn't come from either Ateneo or La Salle, you have to root against them. Now, I hate to say anything bad about 'The Bullet' because he's my favorite PBA point guard of all time from his Purefoods days, but he blew it. His brother Franz totally coached his pants off in that series. Why did he keep going with the big line-up (with Borboran at the wing) when La Salle's guards were killing them with dribble penetration off the screen-and-roll? Why were his best rebounders (Fampulme and Thiele) on the bench when La Salle's bigs were feasting on them on the offensive boards? Why did he stick with his equal opportunity motion offense in crunch time instead of going with the hot hand (Paul Lee)?

At least they had that 14-game winning streak.

Sports in General. This morning I was thinking about how my generation's the last ones who'll be into sports, in general. Ok, I'm probably a bad example, because I watch sports more than most anything on TV and I'd watch anything. Like, a few moments ago, while waiting for The OC to come, I was watching a re-run of a meaningless game between Air 21 and Welcoat from last conference, a match-up that features two mediocre, boring, nondescript ballclubs, neither of which I have any emotional attachment to.

(Oh, and say what you want about The Oc, but I love me my Taylor Townsend.)

But back to my point about the generation thing. Most of my friends, even those who aren't really big fans, can still be bothered to watch when there's a big game coming up. I have two brothers and a bunch of cousins who are younger than I am, and they're just not collectively into sports the way people my age (and older) collectively are. Even Ateneo vs. La Salle games, as fun as they are and as rabid as the students are, most kids who get into it turn out to be Ateneo fans and La Salle fans rather than basketball fans, and for that matter, sports fans, in general. Then again, it's hard to blame them; with everything else that's going on in the world, with cable TV, the Internet, advanced video game consoles, etc., why would they bother watching indifferent athletes with whom they have nothing in common, and why would they bother rooting for teams who just win, for the most part, enough to break their hearts?

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totoo ba talga yung kay ara and pacman?

dapat pala dito ko pupunta for my showbiz chismis fix. hehehe. :)


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