If you are a sports fan, it is important to get your sports fix on a regular basis. Growing up, for me, I was a huge fan of the Toronto Blue Jays. I was upset if I missed a game. I had few options back in the 1980’s and even the 1990’s to follow the game, and my preferred choice was usually the radio. Or, my parents would turn the TV on then mute it. Then they cranked up the radio so we could hear Tom and Jerry call the game.
There was something so pure about listening to a baseball game on the radio. If I closed my eyes and listened carefully, I almost felt like I was there. I could hear the ambient sounds of the ballpark coming through my speaker, like heckling fans or the hollering “beer here for sale” guy.
If I was away on a trip or even just out for an evening it was rather difficult to follow the Blue Jays or really any other hometown sports. Newspapers proved useful, where I could get the score and sometimes a short news story the next day. There was always the telephone, where someone could check on the score and tell me instantly. But, until recently sports fans had few options if they really had to have their fix.
An avid fan today has a plethora of choices to get their sports fix. It is so vast that it’s almost overwhelming.
First of all, the old reliable radio is still available, with Jerry still calling the game, along with Jo. There’s something so sweet about listening to the Jays game on the radio, while in the car driving to the cottage or just sitting at home. With the Blue Jays Radio Network a super fan can listen, on the radio, from Vancouver to Halifax. And there is no subscription fee to listen live.
Today every game, all 162 of them, are aired live on TV, all be it on cable, on Rogers Sportsnet. The regular team of Buck Martinez and Pat Tabler are entertaining and informative. Many people still do subscribe to cable TV. But, if you have just a basic TV package and want to watch the game on actual simple TV you are out of luck.
Then comes the internet. About 89% of Canadians have access to the internet, and if you are a sports fan there are many ways to make use of the World Wide Web. Every sport, including Major League Baseball, streams games live on the internet – for a fee. If you want to watch your favourite sports team and you are on the road, don’t have cable TV or eke, you are at work and can’t miss the game, the internet can usually come through for you.
MLB TV boasts that a fan can “watch live on over 400 devices.” Really? I didn’t even know there were 400 different devices available. Other major North American sports have similar subscription options, such as the NBA, NHL and NFL. I see that the MLS also has a subscription option to stream all their games live. Most sports leagues around the world have jumped on the live streaming option as well. On a quick check, for example, I see the English Premier League and Japanese baseball. International multi-sport competitions also live stream.
If you don’t want to pay to live stream or don’t have enough data to watch a game live (wow do live sports eat up a lot of data!), a super fan can easily follow the game with live updates on the internet or check scores for every sport around the world 24 hours a day. The internet has definitely given sports fans an easy path to become sports addicts, with so many websites, blogs and social media feeds dedicated to the love of sport.
Are you a sports fan? What’s your favourite sport and how do you follow it and get your sports fix? Leave me a comment here, post on Facebook or Tweet me @AliciaRichler.