Saturday, October 31, 2015

October: Such A Great Sports Month in North America, It's Scary


Aside from the fact that the greatest person alive was born in this month (I was going to say it was me, but for the sake of sports, let's say it's Mike Ditka or something), the month of October is the most insane month ever. You've got candy, horror movies, pumpkin-spiced everything, cooler weather (in most regions), foliage, and the fear of impending Christmas commercials. But not only do you have all of that stuff, you just happen to have all of the Big Four (and the stepchild MLS) playing at the same time. While two of the five sports are ending, another two are beginning, and the fifth is nearing the midway point. If you're a sports fan, you have no excuse to not be watching sports in some way.

(I actually took this picture!)
The sports you see throughout the month have their own representation, and you may have been familiar with these sightings already.

Shall we take a look at what we've got?

The Baby in the Cute Halloween Costume: NCAA Football Season
Ah, this is the time of year when you have a ton of college students dedicating their weekends to look absolutely goofy and have a reason to party. This is also the time of year when there are alumni of 25 years pulling their college gear out of mothballs to cheer on their alma mater. Due to the fast pace of the game, and the young men fighting for possible draft spots for the NFL, you can never go wrong with heartbreaks and excitement. Plus, it's one of the few things that commercialism hasn't destroyed...yet.

The Kid with the Eccentric, Hand-made Costume from Something that People Don't Get the Reference from: MLS
If there is a game (or the ending of a game) that will show you how ridiculously exciting the tail-end of the MLS season is, this is it from Thursday night. While there has been a bigger following of soccer in the United States, it will often be overshadowed by the ones above it. Regardless, this is a playoff series that you don't want to miss. I wrote about MLS' struggles for attention before. You can read it here.

The REALLY Loud Infant, or, the One Kid at Lunch that Throws Out Their Trash Yelling, "KOBE!": NBA
Although preseason exists for this sport as well as another, fists (or elbows, for that matter) don't really start flying until the last week of the month. Closet basketball fans come out wearing their worn-out Jordans and shootin' hoops while saying they can nail threes better than Stephen Curry. Not to mention that the debate of who is better between LeBron and Jordan starts firing up again as if it didn't skip a single beat. Despite possible overshadowing by their college counterparts in the month of March, the stage is theirs for several months to come, so October is a rather cool coming out party for the men on the hardwood.

The College Kid Worried About Academic Probation, or, The One ALWAYS Wearing the Scarf and Matching Furry Boots: NHL
Unlike the sport above, the NHL comes crashing into main play in the beginning of October. While there is a preseason that lasts about two weeks or so, it doesn't really matter (especially if you're ESPN). However, once it starts, it certainly starts. With the new and improved Overtime rules (3v3...that's right), the game really makes you want your heart to jump out. Oh, and because of the ice and cooler conditions, that's a perfect excuse for boots and scarf weather. See? I brought it back around.

The Disgruntled Barfly Who Just Raked His Entire Lawn This Morning, or, the Kid Running to the TV with a Bowl of Cereal to Watch Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on Saturday Morning: NFL
We've been around for a little while, and though we may be tired and weary from the week's duties, we always have that one day to hang back in our fatigue or just get "totally hype" to sit in front of the television set for a couple of hours [for example, I was "totally hype" watching the The Joy of Painting marathon on Twitch for the past few days]. Since most Divisional matchups are gone for a little while, we've gotten the tougher pieces out of the way, but October is but a reminder that it's not how you start, it's really how you finish. Start gathering your strength again.

That One Person at a Party that Gets Their Second Wind and JUST WON'T QUIT, or, the Sophisticated Person at Your Job that Started Annoying You Three Weeks Ago: MLB
Ah, October baseball. If you didn't watch any of the 3,000 or so games that have been broadcast since April, then I guess now's the best time to do that. Sure, it seems like it goes on forever, and there may be some [batflip] fireworks in the process, but don't worry, it'll pass, and you'll start to miss the memories soon enough. On second thought, Joe Buck still carries over. So there's that second one.


Imagine having the choice of watching either sport at your disposal. This is the October of a sports fan in North America.

While we're going into the unpredictable November, we always have this month to eternally worship if pumpkins aren't quite for you. Sure, I get birthday cake too, so it's another reason for me to love it, but there are times to be proud to be a fan. We've enjoyed the memories, and we've enjoyed the numerous choices that have been had.

Now, go watch your episodes of The Walking Dead or something. I'm gonna continue watching sports.

-- Stephanie

(Oh, and Happy Halloween to you sillies.)