WASHINGTON — Opening ESPN.com on a dreary evening in early June, one expects updates on the NBA or NHL Finals, or perhaps the score of a baseball game if neither of the other two are in action that evening.
Maybe there’s the arrest or sentencing or firing of a player or coach somewhere else in the sports world, or somebody signed to a new contract. Otherwise, it’s pretty light.
On this particular Monday evening, all of those stories were present, in one capacity or another, on the ESPN.com homepage. Ohio State’s Thad Matta getting fired, ex-MMA fighter War Machine getting sentenced, the Seattle Seahawks signing a backup quarterback, etc.
Oh, and there’s this.
Nothing against ESPN, or Eddie Matz, who has been on 106.7 The Fan programming countless times. But do we really have to dig back into this? We all know it’s tough to fill the virtual pages in early June, and even tougher to do so through the coming two months.
Heck, we churned out a whole post that was nothing but polls not two weeks ago.
But we’re talking about a hypothetical contract that a player will, in theory, sign in about 18 months. Let me remind you, we were having this same conversation 18 months ago, shortly after Bryce Harper had won the NL MVP award. And then the conversation lulled in the following 18 months as Harper struggled throughout the majority of the 2016 season.
Now that Harper appears to be back to his 2015 ways, we as media are apparently back to our 2015 ways.
Yes, Bryce Harper will almost definitely receive $400 million in his next contract. Unless, of course, he struggles this season again. In which case, he might not!
But if he plays at his current pace for the remainder of this season, and then he does the same thing next season, establishing this obscene level of play as his norm, he’ll get considerably more than $400 million!
Now here’s the rub: That’s all still so far away. Nothing we say now has any impact whatsoever. Unless there is some fascinating new wrinkle — there’s not — let’s just stop with this conversation.
Maybe, as collective sports media, paying no attention to division by sport, we can all tap into a new and fruitful conversation for debate.
Say, has anybody compared LeBron James to Michael Jordan yet?