Can you imagine the tension of being an astronaut on the launching pad anticipating a liftoff with a chance the mission will be scrapped because of weather?
It is how any of us could feel while waiting to see if the Kansas City Chiefs are going to host the Houston Texans to open the 2020 National Football League season on schedule.
The NFL brain trust has had the chance to see how two other major professional sports have negotiated through the virus infected population. Major League Baseball has already been on life support twice since initiating an abbreviated 60 game season a couple weeks ago. The Cardinals are quarantined right now, the Marlins and Phillies have also been sidelined with covid-19 outbreaks on their squads but are now back in action.
The National Basketball Association has so far found success in their controlled “bubble” environment. Even players without symptoms that have broken with the highly restrictive guidelines to prevent the spread of the virus have been quarantined out of caution.
Football players will be living in the general population, and when one of them takes the liberty of attending a major family event; the birth of their baby or the funeral for a loved one, no one will fault them. But risk goes with those decisions. Of course, in the real world, one would find far less significant events to break with the rules medical experts purport to be the best practices to stop the spread of the Coronavirus.
One NBA player was let out of the NBA bubble to attend the funeral of his grandfather, and thought it a good idea to stop off at a strip club on his way back to the team.
If a player does that while living in a controlled environment, how many are going to do it if they are just headed back to their house or apartment?
I am fully engaged in preparing for the NFL season as if we are going to have liftoff, and would be less confident if I had not gotten word this week that all systems are go, according to top NFL brass. I have no reason to doubt this report, and for the first time on the Qoxhi Picks site we will be doing two sports simultaneously.
While the NFL is our hallmark product, in recent years we have delivered clients successful wagering campaigns in the NBA playoffs. Instead of them being staged outside the NFL season in April, May and June, this year they will start after the league completes their eight game playoff positioning resumption of the 2019-2020 season.
The NBA playoffs are scheduled to tip-off on August 16th, before the NFL kickoffs their 2020 season on September 10th. The NFL will have played at least four weeks of their regular season before the NBA will determine their season champion. Five weeks of NFL games will be in the books before an NBA champion is crowned if the series goes seven games and concludes on October 13th.
While I am rooting for baseball to survive through their 60 game campaign and postseason, and have more confidence the NBA will crown a champion in early October, I have great concern that the NFL will avoid having to shut it down before we get to Super Bowl LV.
Regardless of what happens in the future, right now we are going to get the NBA playoffs and perhaps the start of the NFL regular season on schedule. With the same kind of excitement that I suppose an astronaut experiences hoping to hear the thrust of his engines instead of conditions that prevent liftoff, I’m ready to go.