With nothing ahead to preview, five things that one may want to read from the past weekend:
The New York Times’ great John Branch, who did a magnificent piece about the Church in the Canyon in Calabasas not long after the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash, comes back with “Does Coronavirus Mean the End of Sports as We Know Them?” He writes:
For decades, sports were a constant, part of the background noise of American culture, and maybe an unhealthy obsession. Games were always on. Radio was filled with banter. Twitter fights were had. There were office pools, side bets and serious gambling. Sports gave us something to talk about when the conversation slowed, something to watch when there was nothing else to do. Maybe this will be a reboot, a cleanse to slow or recalibrate our metabolism. Maybe, when this is all over, we will be weirdly thankful for the cultural enema.
Follow John at https://twitter.com/JohnBranchNYT
From Tim Layden of NBCSports.com, under the headline: “Sports crystallized coronavirus for America; now we adjust to life without them,” as he writes:
All of this does two things: One, it drives home the seriousness of the health issue facing the United States and the world. (Perhaps it should not have needed driving home, but these times we live in can be confusing). Two, it underscores, with less urgency but analogous longing, the role that sports play in the lives of many Americans. The games will be gone, and even amidst everything else that inconveniences us, and frightens us, the absence of those games will be profoundly felt.
Follow Tim at https://twitter.com/ByTimLayden
There is a sportswriter in Minnesota who wrote his first column in 1945 has just turned 100. And he continues to work. Hail Sid Hartman, and read the lead he wrote for Sunday’s piece in the Minneapolis Star Tribune:
Writing a column as I turn 100 years old is hard to believe. Writing it as the sports world has completely shut down around the world is even harder to believe.
As you ponder how those older than you might be affected by this virus, think of what this man is thinking in this point in time.
Follow Sid at twitter.com/SidHartman
Ben Cohen, Louise Radnofsky and Natalie Andrews of the Wall Street Journal have a piece that explains “How a Doctor, Congressman and NBA Star Shut Down American Sports,” with some interesting context to who and how Dr. Anthony Fauci got to this position in being a voice of reason. They write about Fauci, a huge Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle fan who captained his high school basketball team:
This diminutive high-school basketball player, a man perceived as marginalized in the Trump administration’s response to coronavirus, would change the course of sports history.
Follow Ben at https://twitter.com/bzcohen
Fr. James Martin is a go-to person for perspective in the world from the prism of faith. His piece for America Magazine, “Faith in the time of Coronavirus,” brings us peace. He writes:
Many things have been cancelled because of the coronavirus. Love is not one of them.
Follow Fr. Jim at https://twitter.com/JamesMartinSJ
From where we hang out on the edge of the cliff:
=== Our discussion with Fred Wallin about where L.A. sports can go from here:
=== We are on the cover of the Los Angeles Business Journal with a rare extended Q&A with Rams owner Stan Kroenke, the publication’s 2020 Business Person of the Year. It’s one of the coolest interviews we’ve ever done in our 40-plus years in the business of journalism. It is also online at labusinessjournal.com:
=== We have this piece in Angelus News about how the Salesian basketball team from East L.A. — the varsity roster had only seven players — won the CIF 3AA title less than a week after they were invited to attend the Kobe Bryant Memorial Service at nearby Staples Center, thanks to the Lakers’ Tim Harris.
=== How we spent last weekend, at least Saturday:
== This tweet, leading to this video:
== From the Washington Post (offered free): A global coronavirus simulator shows how outbreaks spread, and the best ways to “flatten the curve.”
== If you’ve made it this far, here are two more:
— The New York Times: “Stirring Sermons About Coronavirus, in Empty Cathedrals”
— Esquire: “Fox News Is Still Peddling Coronavirus Misinformation to Its Extremely At-Risk Viewers“