Charles Dickens, author of "A Tale of Two Cities told us “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness.”
If Chuck Dickens was writing about the Bay Area sports scene, he could have just ended his famous opening with the first six words.
Having been with the Oakland A’s during the Golden Age of sports 1980’s style, we have now entered a “Platinum Sports Phase” that may continue to play out for years to come.
In the recent past, local sports fans have enjoyed two playoff baseball teams, two World Series victories for the Giants in the past three years, a revitalized 49ers franchise making it back to the Super Bowl, a Rose Bowl appearance by Stanford, a Women’s Final Four, the Warriors' return to the playoffs and the the perennial playoff-bound Sharks sweeping the Vancouver Canucks. And let's not leave out the world’s greatest sailors on S.F. Bay during the America’s Cup later this year. And, the Super Bowl is coming in either 2016 or 2017.
The Earthquakes are shaking things up in the MLS and building a new soccer stadium. Levi’s has stitched up the rights and put their rivets on the new football stadium in Santa Clara and the Kings will remain on their throne in Sacramento.
There are highly paid pundits of professional and collegiate play who tell us what will happen in the world of sports before it happens. Everyone with a broadcast logo on their microphone or name on a blog is an expert.
I can’t think of anyone who saw all of this good news coming, and sports fans in the Bay Area are having the time of their lives.
Who knows what will happen to all the talent selected in the recent NFL draft by the 49ers and Raiders. As I listened to players being chosen and teams on the clock I couldn’t get the voice of Mel Kiper Jr. out of my mind while he was pontificating back in 2007 on the man who would turn around the fortunes of the Silver and Black.
“Three years from now you could certainly be looking at a guy who is certainly one of the elite top five quarterbacks in this league. Nobody has an arm like JaMarcus Russell.”
Two "certainlys" in one paragraph is always the kiss of doom. Kiper Jr. continued:
"Obviously, he'll need a little time but you’re talking about a 2-3 year period once he’s under center. He is certainly John Elway like.”
Actually, time has shown that he was certainly not! So as we bask in the glow of teams winning, players performing and buildings being built, let’s calm down when our sports seers tell us the world might be coming to an end on the following stories:
-Tim Lincecum's velocity or release point
-Matt Cain’s shaky start
-Monta vs. Bogut
-A’s moving to Siliconia
-Kings going to Seattle
-Sharks not making the playoffs this year.
In the words of Mel Kiper Jr. We have certainly been ahead of the game when it comes to predicting Bay Area sporting success.