Sunday, February 13, 2011


This was a sad weekend for a lot of sports fans. That's because the NFL off-season has now begun, and for the first time in months there has been no football to watch.

Folks, get used to it. We are likely not going to see any NFL games for a long time if the labor negotiations keep on going at a snail's pace. That ought to free up a lot of time for people to, uh, watch poker on TV.

Don't laugh. One of the reasons cited for the poker boom was the fact that the NHL went on lockout during 2004-05. Thanks to the lockout, a LOT of TV time was freed up and something had to fill it, so poker shows ended up filling the free time. That's how NBC launched its National Heads-Up Poker Championship -- to fill weekend TV time left over by the NHL! And so much TV time on TSN and Sportsnet ended up being filled by poker shows on TV!

If the NFL goes out his fall, the networks will have to fill a lot of free time. Poker could stand to be a big winner in all of this.

Same for NASCAR, which is still looking for more eyeballs for its "Chase". Last night NASCAR more or less kicked off its season at Daytona with its Bud Shootout, won by Kurt Busch. But that race doesn't count for any points. Next week's Daytona 500 does, though. It couldn't come fast enough for both race fans and for NFL fans looking for something to watch on a Sunday afternoon.

Also, I gotta give props to the NHL for stepping up to the plate in the last few weeks to do its best to fill the NFL void. Two weeks ago they had the All-Star game and this weekend was Hockey Day in Canada, and next weekend is the big outdoor Heritage Classic in Calgary.

I think all this is better than the basketball offerings out there that now dominate TV. For some reason, hoops just doesn't cut it to the same extent as football does-- my reaction to it is "I can watch hoops the rest of the week!"

Anyway, all those sports are keeping me occupied. Heck, I miss football already, but there's plenty of other things to watch.

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