The X Games are not something that I love to watch or wait all year to see, but they are an entertaining competition to watch during the night. You wouldn’t know it, but they are happening right now. X Games XIII began last Thursday, but has barely been advertised and hardly shown. There seems to be one main reason for this: Barry Bonds. Instead of the normal coverage of the event, ESPN has shifted its schedule to cover every San Francisco Giants’ game until Bonds breaks Aaron’s home run record. Watching Bonds’ at bats is fun, because you know that you could be watching history be made, but I really don’t care about the actual game. Maybe if they were in a pennant race, but the Giants are out of it and I have absolutely no reason to watch the actual game. For those that do, watch it on your local stations, but showing the full game is unnecessary. Show “Live Look Ins” to each at bat, but don’t broadcast every inning. There are many other events that sports fans want to watch, including the X Games, that can be shown instead of the Giants’ game.
Back to the X Games, which made a rare visit to the television today with time both on ABC (during the day) and ESPN and ESPN2 (at night). Just like you, I hadn’t seen anything until today, but there seemed to be a bunch of familiar faces missing from the event. These guys could definitely be there, but Travis Pastrana, Danny Way, and Shaun White all seem to be no shows (don’t take my word on that by the way). Some big names (i.e. names that I know) were there though such as Jeremy McGrath, Tommy Clowers, and Bucky Lasek. To be fair to ESPN, if the best players are missing, no one is going to watch and there is no reason to show the X Games. When the top stars stop showing up for a competition, it is time to end it. It will be interesting to see if the next X Games get more tv time or less. The Action Sports craze may officially be dying.
One story did make it on to SportsCenter though. After landing a trick in Skateboard Big Air, Jake Brown went up the half-pipe, lost control of his board, and fell 40 feet to the ground where he landed with a “thud”. His shoes jumped off his feet, and his head slammed off the ground. As he flailed through the air right before the crash, you can hear the crowd mutter a unanimous “ow” after they realize what is about to happen. Jake Brown is all right, somehow managing to walk off mostly on his own power, but he did break his wrist and has a contusion on his lungs. Luckily, he will be fine in a couple of months, a miracle if you have seen the video (which is below).
As I write this, Bonds has just hit home run 755, so we are that much closer from getting the Giants off ESPN. Hopefully he will knock 756 over the fence and the entire thing will be over. A week of articles will follow, but then it will be over and the extravaganza will be done. Maybe if he ever gets close to 800 it will pop up again, but I doubt he will make it that far. For Clay Hensley, who gave up number 755, don’t worry too much. Who remembers the pitcher that gave up Aaron’s home run that tied Ruth’s record?