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Enough with the phony all star games

The good thing about this past weekend, from a sports fan’s point of view, was we got rid of two of the ‘phony’ All-Star Games on the same day.

The NHL All-Star game at least resembles hockey, but the biggest problem lately is that a lot of casual fans probably can’t tell you from one year to the next what the format of the game will be.

Like Sunday, where there wasn’t one game, there were three. Two sort of semifinals, and then a final, but none of them were full-length games, so it loses some of the concept of an All-Star ‘game’.

At least it’s better than the NFL Pro Bowl. The game used to be played in Hawaii after the Super Bowl. Then the organizers found out that even the appeal of a trip to Hawaii wasn’t enough to get a fair number of players each year to skip the game for one reason or another.

Add in that there were a few injuries almost every year, and you could see why players (and their teams) weren’t crazy about the idea of having another game to play.

So they moved it back to the mainland and played it the week before the Super Bowl. So that means your all-star game doesn’t have any players from the two best teams in the league, the ones taking part in the Super Bowl a week later.

The NBA All-Star game? Well, let’s just say the next time anybody plays real defense in the game will be the first time, which was, of course, a problem with the NHL game a few years ago.

The only true All-Star game is the one that started it all: baseball. The game is played partway through the season, so the players are still in game condition. It’s a game the players love to participate in because it gives them a chance to get together with friends from other teams.

It’s also a game that stays truest to the sport itself. There’s good pitching, good defense and good hitting.

There’s a reason it has a nickname of its own – the Midsummer Classic.

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