I don’t know if I’ve ever talked about sports on here, so if not, here is Sports Post #1.
One of the things I find most fascinating about professional English soccer is all the different levels of clubs and how connected they are through their system of relegation and promotion. It injects drama in the battle for the bottom of the league, whereas without the threat of relegation, poor-performing teams can just kind of go through the motions to get the season over with without any repercussions. Given the money involved in American sports franchises, I’ve always imagined it would be impossible to ever implement something like that over here. But Daryl at theoffside.com has pitched the idea for MLS based on the league’s anticipated expansion to 18 teams. Simply, once the league is at 18, you break it into two divisions of nine teams, and at the end of the season the bottom two or three clubs in Div I drop down to Div II, and the top two or three in Div II move up to Div I.
I don’t follow MLS at all (though I’ve been considering starting this year), but I can say that I listen to various podcasts and check numerous websites on a daily basis following the relegation battle currently going on in the Premier League. I’ve been calculating various scenarios that would keep Newcastle and Portsmouth in the Premier League and trying to decide who out of West Brom, Stoke City, Hull City, Middlesbrough and Blackburn I would be least bothered to see go. If the EPL were run like the NFL, MLB or even MLS, this interest would be completely absent. All of these teams could resign themselves to the fact that they’re not going to win the championship, they’re not going to qualify for Europe, and there’s always next year. BORING.
MLS: Please listen to this guy named Daryl.