The world is filled with sports fans. I consider myself to be one of them, but I've also learned that there's always somebody out there who seems to have more passion or more knowledge for a sport than you do. That's a good thing. It means there is room for you to cram more and more sports into your life, if it will fit.
Take the drafts for professional sports. I really don't pay much attention to those. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because it is not watching an actual game. Or maybe it's because it resembles the business side of sports, which I sometimes tune out (example: What professional athletes get paid.). Perhaps the biggest reason is there's a disconnect for me between these players, who you often haven't heard of, until they make it to playing with the big boys, if they even make it that far.
What have you done for me lately
For me, I'd rather pay more attention to the team's roster right now. I want to know who's with the club this season, some of the top guys waiting in the wings that might get a shot, and that's about it. Those are the players I want to follow and focus on.
First of all, following the drafts and players in all of the minor ranks before they hit the professional spotlight takes more time. While it does matter to the overall future of teams, I guess I'm just more inclined to let it be. I don't care to know all the stats for a fourth-round draft pick that may or may not ever play with the big club.
Plus, once players make it to the show, you can usually learn about their background pretty quickly in the draft, how they produced in the minors or any trade history they might have.
I think the way drafts for professional sports have become such huge events the past few years might actually have steered me away from watching them, too. For instance, the NFL draft. It's no secret that the NFL isn't a sport I closely follow. But the large spectacle that organization has made of the draft leaves me poking fun at it, rather than putting on my sports-fan cap and enjoying another part of the sport.
Use caution following drafts
It's important to have an idea of what's going on with your favorite teams, but we should also be careful about putting so much stock into something like the draft as well. These young players, many who are still teenagers, are shoved into the spotlight with a chance to prove themselves. I think it's OK to wait until these guys are at least on the verge of getting the call-up to invest time and interest in them.
I suppose what I'm saying is I'm fine with not knowing every single thing there is to know about the teams I follow and every single player they have in their organization.
Maybe I'm robbing myself of another great facet of sports. Maybe someday I'll start paying attention to more and more aspects of the sport that goes beyond when the guys take the field or ice. But for right now, I enjoy how I conduct myself as a sports fan.