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Saturday, August 19, 2006


DC United Ties Colorado Rapids

Today's game (match?) is the first complete MLS game that I've watched (saw about ten minutes of a previous DC United game). Both NFL Football and MLB Baseball can end in a tie, but an MLB Baseball game ending in a tie is so rare that I'm not sure that it actually can happen, and while NFL games are much more likely to end in a tie than a MLB game, they're still rare enough to create much talk when they occur.

Glad United didn't lose, but . . . they tied. How am I supposed to respond to a tie? A vague feeling of happiness, mixed with sadness? We are talking about a first place team with just 2 losses playing a 9-8 team, and United did not pick up a win in their last three matches, so how exactly can I be happy with a tie? Only in thinking "at least they didn't lose." On the other hand, the game announcers mentioned that last years champs lost 13 regular season games (32 regular season games, ended up with a record of 19-13? nope, can't tell because of the fact ties exist, could have been 0-13-19, except I doubt a team that never won a game in regular play would win the Championship).

Interesting game to watch and I believe I see one reason beyond the low scoring reason, for why Soccer has so much trouble advancing further into USA culture. That reason is the game itself - the 45 minutes of game, 15 minutes of break then another 45 minutes of game. I saw this in the rules before I watched the game on TV, but I didn't really think about it until I saw the game. That's 45 straight minutes of game. No TV breaks, no breaks except for the half-time break. If the broadcasters go to commercial, the game does not stop, the game continues. Broadcasters don't take a break, game continues. What does the audience do? Never move, that's what. At least never leave the vicinity of the TV screen. I now know why in some movies from "soccer" countries there is a big point of having a TV in the restrooms.

Soccer, being soccer, ends up with a lot of low scoring games, if you get up for any reason, you will likely miss something important. Stay and watch people kicking the ball around. Get up and miss goals.

I was fortunate. I put off eating supper or doing anything else (like getting a drink of some kind) until after the game was over (of course I did get up at half-time). Therefore I saw the two goals.

All other major sports (with two+ exceptions), Baseball (inning breaks/side changes/pitching changes), Football (the NFL kind, quarters), Hockey (do they call them periods?), Basketball -> all have built in time for broadcasters to show commercials. Soccer doesn't. The two+ exceptions? Auto-racing and golf. Both involve more than two competitors, and both can somewhat get away with taking a commercial while action continues to happen (The + is for Horse-racing - the only major events in Horse-racing, these days, are the big events - the Kentucky Derby races and the like, events that go by so quickly that there's plenty of commercial time - the pre-race talking, broken up with commercials, and the post race talking, broken up with commercials, the race itself is over before you know it).

Right, sorry, just my thoughts after watching a Soccer game/match/whatever. Not sure why I included these thoughts in a baseball blog, other than I have no where else to express these thoughts.

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