Thursday, August 04, 2005

Goodness, Gracious - Great Halls of Fame!

"Ladies and Gentlemen, this got to be unbelievable. What a player!"

"That's right, John! And did you know he is only the fourth player in history to be able to score two touchdowns in a double digits fourth quarter comeback. What a game!"

"He sure earned his credits to go to Canton, Ohio."

I heard NFL players get to go to on a field trip to Disneyland when they win the superbowl. But where is Canton, Ohio? Or did he say Dayton, Ohio? It turns out Canton is the home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, a museum of football players and events.

Pro Football Hall of Fame
Similarly as there is a Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York, a Tennis Hall of Fame and even a Rock'n Roll Hall of Fame. Sounds all pretty interesting to take a peek. Especially since I haven't heard of them in Europe. A Soccer Hall of Fame? A Biljart Hall of Fame? A Cycling Hall of Fame? The closest thing to a soccer hall of fame would be the thropies and scarfs hanging in the club bar. Or the website celebrating 125 years of Royal Antwerp Football club and a celebration game between the players who used to play for the team througout the years and a top international team, such as Manchester United. But after the game, it is back to the daily obscurity for most of those players.

When I heard about a process to be inducted in the hall of fame, as well as limitation on the number of inductees, I was disappointed. Can you imagine the lobbying effort to get your player or band inducted? Let's take a look at the 2005 inductees into the rock 'n roll hall of fame: U2! Hold on a second. U2 isn't already part of the elite gang? And the famous "rock 'n roll" duo, Simon and Garfunkel (!), were inducted in 1990. Or for that manner, "rock 'n roller" Bob Marley in 1994.

Or take a look at the tennis group: Ivan Lendl ("Leno") finally made it in 2001! That's 12 years after ending his career of 94 Singles Titles and 52 Finals and 6 Doubles Titles and 10 Finals.

And that's when I realized this has nothing to do with the merits of the player, the band or the sport. It is about hijacking a sport to create a profit center. And a ceremony show. And let's sell commercial time slots. Anyone interesting in starting a hall of fame restaurant chain where we sell jackets and pins? No thank you! I prefer the smoke filled club bar with the trophy box.


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