Monday, June 15, 2009

ESPN Discovers Pro Sports Beyond NY, LA, BOS and CHI;

"probably won't cover them," network says.

Breaking News by the Keith is Good! Staff
15 June, 2009; Kansas City, MO

It was only by accident that ESPN reporter Bill Simmons sat at the edge of a Motel 6 Bed in Missouri. En route to LA for a tell-all interview with Kobe Bryant's dog walker, Simmons' plane was struck by a bird and landed in Kansas City. After a taxi ride to a comped room, Simmons found himself in front of the television:

"I like to catch high school stuff when traveling," he wrote on his blog, "to scout kids who could play for the Yankees or the Lakers or maybe even the Mets or the Celtics. I was flipping channels [and found] a baseball game. They were playing in a decent sized-stadium, under the lights, and I thought, 'wow - this is some high school program.' Then I noticed the blue team had 'Kansas City' across their chest and the red team had 'Texas.' My first reaction was that they had some sort of super advanced intrastate televised beer-league softball tournament going on, but then, after they zoomed in on the batter, he had the Major League Baseball logo on his helmet!

Simmons hopped on his laptop and found the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers to indeed be pro teams.

"Who knew?!" Simmons exclaimed.

Apparently, no one at ESPN. Simmons called in his discovery to scoffs and skepticism. Tim Bunnell, ESPN's Senior Vice President of Programming, responded via text to Simmon's call: "ROTFLMAO! j/k?" Stuart Scott, Sports Center Anchor and talking head replied, "Hilarious! Bouya! Good Joke! Bouya! Bouya! Bouya!"

But this was no j/k. Simmons, as chronicled in his blog, "just assumed that pro sports stopped once LA or NY lost." He was astonished to discover that teams such as these Kansas City Royals had actually won professional championships. Simmons' mind was further blown when he investigated the rosters of some of these non-LA/BOS/NY/CHI teams.

"Apparently there's this dude named LeRon James? I don't know...he's supposed to be like, the best basketball player in the world! Guess what? He plays in Cleveland! Why isn't he in New York or Boston or at least Los Angeles or Chicago if he's the best? I didn't even know basketball existed in Cleveland, to tell the truth. I mean, you never see any of these cities on ESPN, so I just assumed they didn't have any sports."

But now that the light of knowledge has been cast upon the professional sport landscape of middle america, will these cities appear on ESPN broadcasts? Probably not, says Bunnell.

"Honestly," he said on a conference call, "we've got our reporters working overtime as it is. Covering the Yankees and the Red Sox and the Yankees' players wives and the Red Sox's players wives and their friends and well as interviewing each of Derek Jeter's teachers from Kindergarten to the 12th grade...add in all of Kobe's mistresses and the various team personnel and - during slow news cycles - the occasional visit to Chicago...I don't see how we could possibly cover anything else."

And indeed, with all those pressing stories to cover, why should "The Worldwide Leader in Sports" bother to cover anything else?

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