Fans are moving on without sports

Photo by Monica Spencer
Almost a month after the coronavirus pandemic screeched the sports world to a halt, there is still no indication on when fans will return to the vacant stadiums.

Despite no roaring crowd or announcers on television, many fans are in a way united by the loss of sports. Fair-weather to die-hard fans found ways to cope with not just the pandemic but the loss of an entertainment outlet.

Britanee Hudson became an Arizona Diamondbacks fan just one year ago. At 26, she found baseball boring, but after attending a spring game, she fell in love with the sights and the sounds of a night at the ballpark. 

After Hudson’s rookie year waiting out the lengthy baseball off-season, she was excited to see its spring return. The coronavirus will make her wait a while longer.

“I took the news poorly, to say the least. I had been waiting with bated breath for baseball season and had already attended two spring training games with the intention to attend many more,” Hudson said. “I was angry then and still am.”

Hudson was one of millions who found themselves a fan without a sport in mid-March. Once the Center for Disease Control and Prevention made their recommendations about the increasing coronavirus threat, many sports organizations shut down shop. 

The National Basketball Association (NBA) and National College Athletic Association both suspended their seasons, which were heading into the postseason. Major League Baseball (MLB) was perhaps the league stuck in the toughest position; not only would pre-season spring training but the remainder of the season be put on hold. 

Many fans have to find ways to scratch the sports itch.

“Sometimes I will watch old baseball games or play a baseball video game,” Hudson said.  “I still follow all my favorite athletes on social media, so I still get a little taste…”

Lifelong Boston Red Sox fan Christopher Cutler usually would spend time watching their early season games. Now, he takes this time to catch up on studying cybersecurity.

Beyond fans, sports coverage has had to find new ways to cover sports. ESPN has broadcasted older games and esports. On April 5, the sports media giant held twelve hours of video game coverage. 

While the NBA may miss out on an exciting postseason, all hope is not lost for baseball fans like Hudson and Cutler in Arizona.

The MLB has proposed a plan to bring all 30 of their teams to the valley by mid-May. The idea would have spring training fields and the Diamondbacks’ main stadium Chase Field used to play isolated games of baseball to start the season.

The proposal is a sign of people hurrying to bring sports back. President Trump echoed the sentiment in a press conference call with sports owners where he stated the country needs sports.

About Author

Aaron Decker is the Sports Editor at the Mesa Legend. He absolutely love sports. He grew up an avid fan of the Pittsburgh Steeler's and moved to Phoenix in 2002, beginning his journey as an Arizona Diamondback fan. When not writing, going to school or watching sports, he is playing his favorite hobby, video games. You can follow him on Twitter @ADecker1138.

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